Children's Health Executive Oversight Alignment Team
The strong link between education and health is well recognized by leaders in both fields. A healthy student has a much better chance of achieving academic success than a student who is affected by inadequate diet, chronic illness, or an unsafe or unhealthy environment.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states: “Healthy students are better learners. They are better on all levels of academic achievement: academic performance, education behavior and cognitive skills and attitudes.” (CDC "Health and Academic Achievement." CDC - Healthy Youth. CDC, May 2014. Web. 11 Aug. 2014.)
There are six children’s health teams represented in the Alignment Nashville Children’s Health Executive Oversight (CHEO) Team.
- Adolescent Sexual Responsibility
- Healthy Eating and Active Living
- Primary Care
- Healthy Starts
- Behavioral Health/Social and Emotional Living
- School Nutrition
These pillars were formed out of the Children’s Health Summit held in 2007 by Mayor Bill Purcell. There are a number of strategic plans across the city of Nashville and many of them include different aspects of children’s health. CHEO is charged with bringing those strategic plans together and prioritizing the needs out of those plans.
This team is comprised from the leadership (chair and vice-chair) of each of the five Children’s Health A-Teams. Each month the teams discuss what they are currently focused on and garner feedback from the other teams. This provides a rich forum for what’s happening across the city and in our schools.
On October 6, 2014, CHEO held a second Children’s Health Summit (with support from the HCA Foundation). The half-day summit was held at the new Lentz Health Department with over 70 key children’s health stakeholders from across the city in attendance. A primary focus of the Summit was a report written by Dr. Charles Basch titled “Healthier Students are Better Learners: A Missing link in School Reforms to Close the Achievement Gap”, he pinpoints seven “educationally relevant health disparities for all children.” These conditions are also recognized within the Coordinated School Health structure through the Tennessee Department of Education and Metro Nashville Public Schools. These conditions are:
During the Summit, attendees created several action items within each condition that were then presented to CHEO for further discussion. Each of the children’s health A-Teams is incorporating these action items into their monthly discussions and tactical planning.