School Health Program



Diabetes Prevention and Control Branch
Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention Section 
Division for Disease Control and Prevention Services

sbhc  School-Based Health Centers
 Texas School Health Advisory Committee
 Texas School Nurse Program

School Health


The three projects listed above make up the School Health Program.

School Health Program 2014 School Health Logo

Vision:  The DSHS School Health Program envisions a Texas where all children are healthy, ready to learn and prepared to make healthy lifelong choices.

Mission:  The mission of the DSHS School Health Program is to meet the health services and health program needs of children through schools.

1.    Function as central resource to communities:  develop materials, linkages and promotion.

2.    Increase access to health care for all Texas children.

3.    Ensure infrastructure to provide support to schools.

4.    Engage in collaborative efforts:  interagency, intro-agency, partners and stakeholders

5.    Reporting-internal and external 


Of Special Interest within this Site:


Physical Education & Recess as a Platform for Classroom Learning Webinar Presentation
February 5, 2015

84th Legislative Session School Health Related Legislation as of 3-20-15
This document contains school health related legislation taken directly from the official Texas Legislature website.  The bills listed in the document have been filed during the 84th session.  Click on the bill links to track the progress and current status of a bill.  A brief descriptive caption of each bill has been provided. 


SHAC Self-Assessment Tool and Self-Assessment Introduction
REVISED: November 10, 2014
It is important for a district School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) to periodically assess how well it works.  SHAC members should ask themselves whether the SHAC does what it is supposed to; is it meeting its objectives, and if so, to what extent will the objectives be accomplished by the target date?  The SHAC Self-Assessment Tool offers questions to help evaluate how well the SHAC is functioning.  Access the SHAC Self-Assessment Tool and Introduction at

Bullying Prevention Toolkit
REVISED: November 10, 2014
In response to national and state concern about the impact of bullying on students, the Texas legislature has addressed the need for districts to develop anti-bullying policies and interventions. Further, the Texas legislature directed the Department of State Health Services, in collaboration with the Texas Education Agency, to provide and annually update a list of best practice-based early mental health intervention and suicide prevention programs for implementation in general education settings.  

The Bullying Prevention Toolkit was revised and approved by the Texas School Health Advisory Committee at their
November 10, 2014 committee meeting to support schools in their efforts to find effective anti-bullying resources to develop anti-bullying policies and interventions.


Resolution on Obesity Prevention in Texas Public Schools
NEW: May 12, 2014 - The purpose of the Obesity Prevention Resolution is to enable School Health Advisory Councils (SHACs) to provide support to their school district as they work towards improving nutrition education, access to healthy foods, strengthen physical education and physical activity opportunities before, during and after school, and create joint-use agreements to allow access to make recreational facilities available to the community during non-school hours


Frequently Asked Questions Answered by the School Nurse Consultant
REVISED:  June 6, 2014 -
This popular guide compiled by the School Health Program of the Texas Department of State Health Services has recently been updated and is available at


Children's Mental Health Disorder Fact Sheets for the Classroom
NEW:  June 3, 2014 - These fact sheets, produced by the Minnesota Association for Children's Mental Health, are two-sided quick summaries of common childhood mental health disorders, with a description, educational implications, some intervention ideas, and other resources. 


Research and Recommendations for Offering Physical Activity Outside the School Day
REVISED: May 12, 2014 - Attached is research, recommendations and resources on the importance of physical activity outside of the school day to assist schools and school districts in the development of comprehensive physical activity programs. 


Resolution Supporting Inclusive Practices for Students with Exceptionalities in Texas Public Schools
NEW: May 12, 2014 - Resolution from the district School Health Advisory Council to the school board that affirms that all students with exceptionalities shall be provided a high quality, inclusive education with full and meaningful access to the general education curriculum.


Research and Recommendations on Physical Education
REVISED: March 3, 2014
- Attached are research, recommendations and resources on the importance of teaching Physical Education to students in Texas schools; how it fits into a coordinated approach to health, and ways to assess a school's physical education program and address needs. 


Research and Recommendation on School Bus and Automobile Idling (Word 121K)
REVISED:  March 3, 2014- Attached is research and a subsequent recommendation on school bus and car idling for use with school districts as compiled and  approved by the TSHAC membership at their March 3, 2014 TSHAC meeting.


Research and Recommendations on Benefits to Students in School Districts that Prohibit Physical Activity as Punishment
REVISED:  March 3, 2014 - Motivating students to pursue and continue active lifestyles is an obtainable goal and serves as an effective strategy to reduce the public health burden of chronic diseases associated with inactivity.  A singular barrier that can be both physically and emotionally harmful to children and youth is the practice of using physical activity as punishment and/or behavior management. Developed by the Texas School Health Advisory Committee and revised and approved at their March 3, 2014 committee meeting,  this document was developed to assist local School Health Advisory Councils to revise or update Wellness Policies or other district policies/regulations to prohibit the use of physical activity as punishment.

NEW! School Health Funding Alert
The School Health Funding Alert is a service from the School Health Program of the Texas Department of State Health Services. This publication provides funding opportunities for school districts and organizations that serve school-age populations. The Funding Alert is organized in two sections: Current Grant Opportunities with deadlines and Ongoing Grant and Awards Opportunities.


Recommendation and Research on Recess and Physical Activity: Impact on Student Health and Academic, Social and Emotional Development (Word 80K)
REVISED:  January 13, 2014 - Attached is research and subsequent recommendations on the impact of recess and physical activity on student health and academic, social and emotional development as compiled and approved by the Texas School Health Advisory Committee at their May 5, 2008 meeting. This document was prepared specifically to support local school districts in their efforts to comply with SB530, passed during the 80th legislative session.


Resources for Students and Families: Dealing with an Economic Crisis (Word 92K)
REVISED:  January 13, 2014 - The current economic situation has impacted almost everyone, some much more than others. Some students and their families are struggling for basic necessities like food, clothing and shelter. Others have to find different ways to fund post-secondary education. In any case, those working in schools need resources and ideas to provide to students and families dealing with the economic crisis. This document was compiled by the Texas School Health Advisory Committee and approved on March 23, 2009. Click on the title of this notification to access links to resources that may assist school personnel to help those impacted by an economic downturn.


SHAC Meeting Agenda Topics
In addition to the regular business conducted at SHAC meetings, there is benefit for members to learn about topics of interest, engage in relevant discussions, and coordinate initiatives that impact the operation of the SHAC.  This document lists topics for meetings that you may want to consider.  Links are provided for access to resources.  To access this document, go to

NEW! Students with food allergies at risk for anaphylaxis EMERGENCY CARE PLAN for the school
These two documents provides the school with an emergency care plan for students at risk for anaphylaxis.  One document can be filled out on line and the second document is printable only.

REVISED: JANUARY 2013 Annual SHAC Progress Report to Local School Board
As a result of the 2009 81st Legislative Session, school health advisory councils (SHACs) are required to report directly to the district school board at least once annually with a detailed account of SHAC activities and recommendations. To help SHACs with this requirement, the Texas School Health Advisory Committee developed a sample template for the required annual progress report in the form of a power point along with accompanying instructions for its use. Both are attached here for free download. The power point presentation, revised in 2013, has been developed to be customized for local use.

ALERT!  Call for Best Practice Programs and Resources
School districts, agencies and organizations continue to move toward accountability to develop effective and efficient programs that meet the needs of students and their families.  Pressure to document impact, effectiveness, and efficiency generates concern over “what works?”  The Texas School Health Advisory Committee (TSHAC) is committed to helping schools locate “best practice” programs and resources and sharing them via the TSHAC Web site.  This is a call for “best practice” programs in an effort to share them with other school staff from around the state.   There is no deadline by which to submit your application.  This is an ongoing opportunity.  You will be notified within 8 weeks if your program is accepted for posting. To access the Guidelines for Submission of a Best Practice on the TSHAC website and to download an application, go to

NEW!  Recommendations for Sodium Reduction in Schools
The Texas Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke Partnership of the Texas Department of State Health Services has developed a document that addresses the reduction of sodium intake as outlined in the United States Department of Agriculture 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans as it relates to schools.  The Goal II Workgroup of the Partnership, in collaboration with the Texas School Health Advisory Committee, created “Recommendations for Reducing Sodium Intake in the School Setting (2012)” to provide recommended strategies for sodium reduction to school districts and school nutrition practitioners. 

NEW!  Guidelines for the Care of Students with Food Allergies At-Risk for Anaphylaxis
In response to the increase in students with diagnosed food allergies at-risk for anaphylaxis, Senate Bill 27 (2011, 82nd Legislative Session) amends Chapter 38 of the Texas Education Code by adding Section 38.0151. This section requires the Board of Trustees of each school district and the governing body or appropriate officers of open-enrollment charter schools to adopt and administer a policy for the care of students with diagnosed food allergy at risk for anaphylaxis. 

This document is intended to serve as a reference and illustrative guide for local school boards or charter school leadership to utilize in creating and implementing school district policies and administrative regulations. Any portion of this document may be reproduced for educational purposes or policy development.


NEW!  Friday Beat Promotional Flyer
The Friday Beat is an excellent vehicle for delivering the latest news and information regarding school health issues and topics.  Many of you that read the Friday Beat forward it to interested parties who may “need to know” or want to add value to their efforts in school health education or services.  Once a new stakeholder sees benefit in the Friday Beat, it is easy for them to be a subscriber, too.  In order to assist you in “getting the word out” to interested parties about the Friday Beat, a flyer has been developed outlining benefits of and access to the publication.  Feel free to download the flyer and distribute to colleagues and groups or simply forward it to those you feel would benefit from knowing.


The Friday Beat is an excellent vehicle for delivering the latest news and information regarding school health issues and topics.  Many of you that read the Friday Beat forward it to interested parties who may “need to know” or want to add value to their efforts in school health education or services.  Once a new stakeholder sees benefit in the Friday Beat, it is easy for them to be a subscriber, too. 








Last updated March 24, 2015