08 SES 08, Health-Promoting Schools: Teachers in Focus
Parallel Paper Session
Literature emphasizes the importance of health promotion to improve health resources as well as to aid children’s academic progress. The status of health promotion in the educational systems depends on the history and culture among countries. Health education in the French educational system aims to develop health promotion notably by delivering health education throughout a child’s schooling. But “Health education” is not a subject, it is cross-curricular. Students are not required to complete credits in health education in order to graduate. Health education is included in different subjects: citizenship, biology, physical education … in elementary and secondary schooling. As schools are not primarily concerned with the improvement of children's health, health promotion must be become an aspect of the way in which teachers perceive their mission, as well as the constraints of the school setting.
Thus teachers are not systematically trained in the field of health education. Although the prescriptions favour a whole school approach, the practices of teachers differ. Teachers essentially focus on specific health issues (hygiene, nutrition, teeth…), only a third of them work in a global approach.
Under what conditions and which situations do primary teacher develop their competences linked to health promotion?
Our framework on the notion of activity is based on a perspective of ergonomic cognitive psychology (Leplat, 1997), the concept of competence is by reference to Jonnaert (2004) and the theoretical approach to health promotion is defined according to the guidelines of IUHPE (2008) and by St Leger & Young (2007).
This communication aims at providing knowledge on the process which leads teachers to develop their competencies in health promotion. The objectives are the following:
- Characterizing the difference between the prescribed competence (as perceived by the prescriber) and the competence as represented by the teacher,
- Characterizing the situations in which teachers develop their competencies in health promotion,
- Identifying resources linked to the situation, the context and the person underlying the development of teacher competencies.
Jonnaert, P., Barrette, J., Boufrahi, S. and Masciotra, D. (2004) Contribution spécifique au développement des programmes d’études : compétences, constructivisme et interdisciplinarité. Revue des sciences de l’éducation, 30 (3), 667-696. Leplat, J. (1997). Regards sur l’activité en situation de travail. Contribution à la psychologie ergonomique. Paris: PUF (collection Le Travail Humain). St Leger, L., Kolbe, L., Lee, A., Mc Call, D., & Young, I. (2007). School Health Promotion - Achievements, Challengers and Priorities. In Global Perspectives on Health Promotion Effectiveness (pp. 107-124). New York: Springer Science & Business Media.
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