Tennessee's Coordinated School Health Initiative

The Tennessee Department of Education works in collaboration with the Tennessee Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control& Prevention to implement Coordinated School Health (CSH) in Tennessee. Based upon passage of The Coordinated School Health Improvement Act of 1999, Chapter 554 and the subsequent 2006Public Chapter 1001, CSH was created and funded with state budget dollars to implement CSH to all school systems in Tennessee. Funds support the development of a local infrastructure to promote health and wellness for all students and staff and thereby decrease barriers that prevent students from achieving their full academic potential.

State of Tennessee School Laws and Adoptions by the TN State Board of Education

TCA 49-1-1002 the Coordinated School Health Improvement Act – Local school systems will initiate and develop the eight component model of Coordinated School Health and ensure compliance of the following:

TCA 49-6-1001 the Physical Activity Law – It shall be the duty of each local education agency to integrate a minimum of ninety (90) minutes of physical activity per week into the instructional school day for elementary school and secondary school students. Opportunities to engage in physical activity may include walking, jumping rope, playing volleyball, or other forms of physical fitness that promote fitness and well-being.

In 2004, the United States Congress established a new requirement that all school systems with a federally funded school meals program develop and implement wellness policies that address nutrition and physical activity by the start of the 2006-2007 school year (The Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004). This policy addresses the physical activity aspects of the requirement and provides information to school systems to use in developing their own policies.

The Tennessee State Board of Education Physical Activity Policy states that beginning July 1, 2006, each school within the LEA will begin implementation of the School Health Index, which can be obtained free of charge. The School Health Index is an internationally recognized researched-based instrument developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of School and Adolescent Health. This instrument was developed to provide a self assessment and planning tool to allow schools to assess the healthy learning environment.

TCA 49-6-2307 – As commissioned by a state law that passed in 2004, the Tennessee State Board of Education proposed nutrition standards for competitive foods available to K-8 students in school vending machines. The new nutrition guidelines do not affect high schools or private schools, but do extend to all the vending machines, snack bars, school stores, fundraisers and individually packaged cafeteria items in schools serving preschool through grade 8. The guidelines also require smaller serving sizes and specific caps on the amount of fat (at or below 35% excluding nuts, seeds and nut butters), salt (no more than 230 mg – 600 mg based on item) and sugar (at or below 35% by weight) allowed in foods.

Requirements regarding Family Life Curriculum which includes one open public meeting every three years beginning in 2007 (Meeting held September 25, 2007 at 7:00 p.m.)

Requirements regarding the administration of medications and health care professionals and the secure storage of medications, recordkeeping and the orientation and training of all school personnel that handle medications by a school health nurse or a licensed health care professional.

Requirements regarding the employment or contracting for school health nurses at the ratio of at least one fulltime school health nurse per school system and additional positions as provided through the Basic Education Program (BEP) funding formula.

Requirements regarding the professional practice of nurses, including the supervision of school health nurses by a Registered Nurse, Certified Nurse Practitioner, and/or physician.

Requirements with regard to school counseling programs regarding the employment of licensed school counselors and the professional practice of school counselors.

That all individuals employed, contracted and/or otherwise engaged in providing professional services in any of the components of Coordinated School Health are qualified and licensed according to state law and regulations.

CSH Legislation Resources