Healthy Schools Toolkit
The toolkit was developed to help schools implement the Healthy Schools approach and has been utilized by the Toronto District School Board and the Toronto Catholic District School Board. It provides a step-by-step guide to creating a healthier school. It contains many sample plans, letters and templates that School Health Committee can use in their Healthy Schools work.
Fours steps and tools from Healthy Schools Toolkit
The toolkit includes 40 tools and resources designed to guide schools through the steps to creating a healthier school. School Health Committees may choose to use all or any of the tools and resources to support their Healthy Schools work.
Step 1: Form a Healthy School Committee
A key part of a healthy school is establishing a School Health Committee involving parents, students, school staff, a Public Health Nurse and community partners.
Our Tools will guide your school through the steps of developing a School Health Committee; how to communicate with key community members, form a committee representing the whole community, conduct your first committee meeting, and establish a vision of what a Healthy School looks like.
The role of the Healthy School Committee:
- Survey parents, students and teachers/staff to identify priority health issues
- Identify, brainstorm and discuss strategies to address health
- Oversee planning, delivery and evaluation of Healthy School activities
- Involve the school community in decisions
- Provide leadership and direction for promoting health in the school
- Keep the school community informed by sharing progress made by the committee
Step 2: Identify strengths and needs
The tools for Step 2 will help you to survey staff, students and parents to determine what areas are a priority for action. They will also help you to communicate the results and priority areas with the school community.
By identifying your school health needs, your committee will be able to consider:
- Activities the school will enjoy participating in
- The overall vision of teachers, students and parents
- The most important health issues in your school
Step 3: Develop and carry out the Action Plan
Step 3 involves developing an overall goal for health issues and selecting the appropriate activities. This means developing an action plan, communicating the plan with school community members and finally working on the activities in the plan. The Action Plan progress should be reviewed as needed.
In developing your ACTION PLAN, keep these questions in mind:
- What do we hope to achieve?
- What activity would best address the issue being examined?
- For whom is the activity intended?
- What resources are needed to carry out the activity? (e.g. money, staff, venue)
- When will the activity be carried out? What is the time frame?
- Who is responsible for planning and implementing the activity? (assign tasks)
- Have we used SMART goals in the planning process?
- Are we addressing all four Foundations for a Healthy School?
Step 4: Evaluate and celebrate achievements
Reviewing your activity goals and evaluating what you’ve done is the important final step. These tools will help you to determine if you’ve met your goals, how to gather feedback from parents, staff and students and how to communicate your achievements. Finally, the tools will help you to plan for next year.
Celebrating the hard work of the school community will encourage support for Healthy Schools in the future and provide a chance to highlight the school’s success.