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Essential Components of School Health Programme

Updated on August 8, 2011

Essential Components of School Health Programme

Essential Components of School Health Programme

The school health programme encompasses various aspects: The essential ones are described below.

Screening of school children. This activity of school health programme (SHP) has to be carried out in the school. In addition to the MO. STP and the Public Health Nurse (PMN) the school teachers and the class monitors have to participate in this activity. The tasks that are included under this activity can be divided into two broad groups: (i) those which are simple and observational in nature and can be carried out by the teachers, monitors and the parents: these include any apparent deviation from normal health, height and weight, acuity of vision and hearing, gait and posture, pale, and lethargic look, skin conditions, intestinal worm, etc, and (ii) those that need to be performed by skilled persons of medical professions: these include, diagnosis of cases referred by parents and school teachers and other health problems that cannot be detected by the non professionals. While the tasks under the first group are continuous in nature, the tasks to be performed by the health professionals are periodic in nature and the frequency of such examinations will vary according to the workload. However, screenings by the health professionals should be performed at least three times--once during the first year of enrollment at the primary level and thereafter once in 2 to 3 years during their school life. For the diagnosis and care or the complicated and serious conditions a referral system has to be developed by the MO. SHP with the specialized hospitals/clinics.

Healthful school environment.School environment should be healthful as a child spends a good portion of his time in the school. The essentials for a healthful environment in school are: (1) Satisfactory toilet and lavatory facilities: (2) Pure water supply; (3) Good lighting and ventilation; (4) Glare-proofblack boards, ceiling and walls; (5) Suitable chairs and desks; (6) Rest room and playground; (7) Clean environment.

Location. The school should ideally he located at a place away from busy places, properly fenced and kept free from all hazards.

Class room. Height of the class room should be about 12 feet. Floor should be smooth. Room should be soundproof and dustproof. It should be well lighted and ventilated. Area of the class room should not be less than 480 sq. feet. Each child should have 15 sq. ft. floor space and 300 cu. ft. air space. Class room temperature should be between 68° F to 72° F, and humidity Close to 50%. The distance or the blackboard should not be greater than 25 feet or less than 7 feet. Each class room should have an independent entrance.

Play ground. For a primary school it should be 1/2 to I acre, and for a secondary school 5 to 14 acres. With 500 pupils, play ground should be at yeast 7 acres. Play ground should be near the school or it should be centrally placed.

Seats and desks. Single seats and desks are Ideal and next in order of preference comes the dual seats and desks. The faulty seats give rise to certain orthopedic defects. The types of desks used are: (1) Zero desk: Here the posterior edge of the desk is vertically in line with the anterior edge of the seat: (2) Plus desk: In this type there Is a space between the anterior edge of the scat and the posterior edge of the desk: (3) Minus desk: Here the vertical line from the posterior edge of the desk falls on the seat (Fig. 8.1). The zero and minus types are suitable for reading and writing .The seat should take two third of the child's thigh and the height of the seat so adjusted that the thighs remain horizontal, legs remain vertical and the feet rest flat on the floor. The desk should not be too high or too low, too near or too far from each other. There must be sufficient room below the desk for the knees and the desk should be low enough for the elbow and forearm to rest comfortably without bending the back. The back of the seat should support the spine in the lumbar region m all positions. A good seat and desk should suit the size of the child, should allow freedom of movement, should be free from dangerous hinges or joints and should provide pace for storage of books.

Sanitary conveniences. Provision should be made for urinals and privies in sufficient number to meet the demands of the students, Lavatory and urinal accommodation should be as follows: For the first 100 pupils, 1 pan for every 10, and for the next 100 pupils, 1 pan for every 15. There should be adequate supply of water and hand washing facilities.

Water supply. Provision for supply of safe and potable water should be made within the school premises. It is better to drink direct from the tap: special drinking fountains may be installed. In the rural areas where there is no provision for piped water supply, properly maintained tube wells will serve the purpose.

Communicable disease control. This should include early detection of cases of communicable diseases amongst the school children and enforcement of measures to check the spread to other students and immunization of those children who have not been protected against the vaccine preventable diseases.

Nutrition/school lunch Service. Every school should have a school lunch a school meal programme as a part of the education programme. The ‘parent-teacher' association may play a useful role in this regard. The principles of school lunch or mid-day school meal programme are: (a) The meal should be a supplement and not a substitute to home diet: (b) It should supply at least one third of the daily calorie requirement and half of the daily protein need: (c) The cost of the meal ,should be reasonably low: (d) The meat should be such that it can be prepared easily at school: (e) The menu should be' frequently changed to avoid monotony: (f) Those who can afford, may bring their lunch packets from home.

Special surveys. Epidemiological surveys (for growth and development— physical and mental—intestinal worms, anemia, tuberculosis. etc.) conducted from time to time, are useful in determining health needs of school children.

First aid. The responsibility to give first aid and emergency care to the students, who sustain or become sick at the school, rests with the school teachers. In order to enable them to tackle a particular situation the school teachers need to be trained.

Essential Components of School Health Programme


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    • profile image


      7 months ago

      Well explained

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      yeah right!


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