Journal of Health and Medical Sciences
Published: 09 December 2022
Evaluation of Health Promoting Schools Programme in Saudi Arabia
Saeed G Alzahrani
Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, Saudi Arabia
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Keywords: Health Promoting School, Health Promotion, School Health
Background: The health-promoting school (HPS) is a WHO-sponsored framework. This national study aimed to explore the experiences and progress in implementing the HPS programme in Saudi Arabia (SA). Methods: A self-completed postal questionnaire was sent to all 42 school health departments across SA, and the response rate was 100%. Results: Forty respondents (95%) had implemented the HPS programme. Over 400 schools were involved in the HPS programme of which two-thirds were primary schools. The most common activities addressed were health education activities. Less frequently mentioned were healthy school policies, action on the social environment, and developing links with the community. Evaluation was only through internal processes. The main perceived strengths of the HPS were increasing the awareness of students and school staff and improving the school’s physical environment. The main weakness was the lack of legislation and financial support. For further development, the respondents reported the need for financial and human support. Conclusion: This study highlights the growth of the schools participating in the HPS programme. Further research is needed to develop and fully evaluate the effectiveness of the HPS framework in SA.
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