Barriers to School Health Program Expansion in Illinois: A Qualitative Study
Bauman, Paula S.
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The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the issues impacting school health programs in Illinois and barriers to expansion and implementation. Despite the changing health needs of children, school health programs have not been restructured to meet them. Current literature discussed these issues in depth from the viewpoint of school health professionals; however, little data existed from the perspective of Illinois policy makers. Seven interviews were conducted at the state, regional, and local levels in order to begin an initial investigation into this perspective. Data analysis revealed several core issues; the most noteworthy include unfunded educational mandates, lack of research linking health to learning, and the lost vision of public education as a “common good.”