Health Promoting Schools

Health Promoting Schools Logo

Schools are ideal settings for promoting health and wellbeing. Students and staff spend a large part of their lives there and schools are an important focal point in the life of whānau/family and local communities.

“Health Promoting Schools are schools which display, in everything they say and do, support and commitment to enhancing the emotional, social, physical and moral wellbeing of their school community.” (World Health Organisation).

Students from St Mary’s School at their DIY Subway lunch day.

Health Promoting Schools (HPS) as an approach supports a school community’s capacity to create and sustain environments that improve and maintain their health and wellbeing. Research tells us schools taking strategic multi-faceted whole-school approaches that are sustained over time are more likely to produce better and more equitable health and education outcomes. Programmes focused solely on personal health education in the classroom have been shown to be largely ineffective.

The HPS Team at Community and Public Health can assist priority school communities in strategic planning to:

  • start with a school’s own vision;
  • identify and address the school’s specific priorities around health and wellbeing;
  • take actions that use their strengths and build capability in partnership with health, education and social services; and
  • evaluate health and wellbeing in the school and the effectiveness of action taken.

The inquiry-based approach used by the HPS Team is focussed on outcomes and building on what schools already do – by integrating health and wellbeing objectives and actions into school planning and reporting processes.

The staff at Community and Public Health support all schools by offering professional development opportunities for teachers, and facilitating Primary School Health and Wellbeing Leadership Forums.

The Health Promoting Schools Magazine highlights HPS projects from schools across the region. This publication is distributed each term and celebrates achievements, shares ideas and stories about facing challenges.

Helping kids when times are tough

We want to send our sincere gratitude and aroha to all Canterbury school staff who cared for our tamariki during the lockdown on Friday 15th March, and who are now working to help them come to terms with what has happened.

In the coming weeks and months there’s going to be a lot of big emotions for our tamariki, whānau and staff to continue processing.

The Sparklers website is recommended for activities during this time that focus on kindness and friendship and also draw on our strengths. Evidence shows that giving and connecting are two of the very best ways we can nurture our wellbeing, and when times are tough, drawing on our strengths can also really help.

School immmunisations for Year 7 and 8 students

The school-based immunisation programme provides free immunisations for children in Year 7 and Year 8 to protect them against several serious diseases such as tetanus, diphtheria, whooping cough and most cancers caused by HPV.

The programme is available through schools or general practices. It is a convenient way for most families to ensure that their children are protected against serious diseases.

Parents: Check your child’s school bag for the consent form for you read, sign and return to school.

Staff Wellbeing Resource and Presentation from Ian Vickers

Ian Vickers is a passionate advocate for teach wellbeing with seven years’ pratical experience implementing a teacher and school staff wellbeing programme as a Deputy Principal at Sancta Maria School (Auckland).

His challenge and call to action for us all is to play a part in growing a culture shift in the teaching profession so that teacher wellbeing is promoted and valued. Check out Ian’s practical staff wellbeing related resources – for use in professional development.



Contact the Health Promoting Schools Team at your local office for further information:

Ph: +64 3 364 1777

Ph: +64 3 307 6902

Ph: +64 3 687 2600

Ph: +64 3 768 1160

Health Promoting Schools Magazine

Issue 63 – Term 3 2019

Celebrating smokefree students

Community and Public Health Smokefree Educator Harata Franks visited with some of the students and staff at Karanga Mai Young Parents College in Kaiapoi. The aim was to plant a smokefree seed about how smoke affects you, your child/ children and your unborn child.

One student was really motived by this kōrero and made a decision that she was going to stop smoking. It wasn’t long before others made that decision too. Te Hā – Waitaha Stop Smoking Practitioner Courtney Carter-Smith was able to support the six students who all were sucessful at taming the smoking taniwha.

Water-only Schools Toolkit

This toolkit has been developed for schools to use as a quick and easy guide to how to become water-only.

The toolkit contains information and resources to support your school along the way.

Water-only Schools Toolkit

Healthy Events and Fundraisers: A Guide for School and Community Organisers

This booklet is designed to help you, your school and your community, create a food and drink environment that encourages making the healthy choice the easy choice.

The guide provides sample food and nutrition policies for events and schools as well as ideas for healthy prizes, kai, products to sell and activities to do.

Page last updated: 19/08/2019

Copyright © 2019, Community & Public Health,