The Health Promotion Department, HPD, at the Supreme Council for Family Affairs in Sharjah (SCFA) has revealed the outcomes of its study to assess the health-supporting services in Sharjah schools and nurseries ahead of implementing the updated standards of the Healthy Schools Programme. The survey is composed of 11 sections and targeted the administrative and teaching staff in the public and private schools and nurseries in Sharjah.
The results found that 70% of the private schools have green spaces for practicing physical activity, while the percentage in public schools is 58% and in public nurseries 74%. The study also revealed that 86% of the private schools have a healthy food supply policy, and 100% in public schools, whilst this criterion is not applicable to public nurseries where it depends by 100% on kids’ lunchbox.
When it comes to adopting healthy instructions in the canteen, the results showed that 86% of private schools follow healthy instructions in the canteen, while the percentage in public schools reached 90.5%. This criterion is also not applicable to public nurseries, however, there are requirements to prevent unhealthy food by 96%.
About 58% of private schools employ canteen workers after having completed a food safety course, while the percentage in public schools reached 54%. For public nurseries, this criterion is not applicable, however, the kids’ lunchbox is 100% monitored by nursery supervisors. The results indicated that 85% of private schools accept students of people of determination, while the percentage in public schools is 60% in all cases and 40% in certain cases, and in public nurseries, 65% of specific cases are accepted.
In terms of obesity among students and schools’ endeavors to tackle this issue, the outcomes found that 88% of private schools deal with obesity cases among students and grapple with the issue, while the percentage in public schools reached 98%, and in public nurseries 83%. Among the other results was that 71% of private schools organize joint activities between students and parents, while the percentage in public schools is 62%, and this criterion is not applicable to public nurseries.
“The study included scientific and accurate results with important implications and outputs that will contribute to the implementation of the new standards of the Healthy Schools Program according to the highest international levels,” said HE Iman Rashid Saif, Director, Health Promotion Department, “The results have clearly proven the quality of health-supportive services in Sharjah schools and nurseries.”
The results found that 100% of private schools and public nurseries have a clinic inside the school, while the percentage in public schools reached 97%. 100% of private schools, public schools, and nurseries have an evacuation plan, while 99% of private schools, 100% of public schools, and 96% of public nurseries have a first aid kit.
The study also found that schools are committed to training their staff on first aid, where 100% of private schools have trained staff, while the percentage in public schools reached 94%, and in public nurseries was 91%.