Our school, along with several others, has agreed to participate in a very important Health Behaviour Survey amongst young people. We have been asked to support the work of the Local Authority and Public Health and we stand to benefit substantially through our participation in the survey.
The survey data in schools may prompt review of the curriculum and have also been used in a variety of ways including:
- As a starting point for discussion in classroom activities
- As a guide in the choice of resources
- As a prompt for appropriate timing of courses
- As a beginning for further enquiry to strengthen existing programmes, e.g. in PE
- As a starting point for discussions between parents and schools
The survey method that we are using has been developed by the Schools Health Education Unit, Exeter and has been in use now for over 30 years. Over 3000 schools have used the survey, many of them regularly repeating the survey.
The questions concern a wide range of health behaviours, for example:
- Home and family
- Relationships, emotional health and well-being
- Tobacco, Alcohol
- Leisure and money
- Healthy Eating
- Sexual health
The Local Authority and Public Health will also have a reliable database upon which it can objectively plan health care provision for young people. Links between the school and the Authority can be strengthened.
Both the Local Authority and the school find the content of the questionnaire acceptable; it has been customised to suit our local setting.
Each questionnaire is anonymous and confidential, and no pupil will be identified when the data is returned to your school. The Local Authority will receive only the summary of all schools in which individual schools are not identified.
I hope you will agree with us that this is an exercise in which we wish to co-operate fully. I will assume you do approve unless I hear otherwise and I look forward to working with you in planning improved health promotion for our pupils. We hold a copy of the questionnaire in the school office, and if you would like to examine it, you are welcome to do so by appointment.
As part of the survey it will be helpful if your son/daughter brings the following information:
- their postcode (this will be used only for drawing maps of results in the area;
your house will not be identified)
The survey will probably be carried out in the next month.
Mr R Henshaw