Hallways to Health

About the Hallways to Health National Initiative

Launched in 2013 with support from Kaiser Permanente’s Thriving Schools, Hallways to Health (H2H) looks at delivering services and building partnerships beyond the physical walls of a school-based health center to include integrating health into classrooms, teachers’ lounges, and neighborhoods.

The goal of this initiative is to empower school-based health care (SBHC) leaders to be agents of change within their schools and communities, creating policy and systems change in three focus areas: healthy eating/active living, social-emotional health, and school employee wellness.

Project Description

The School-Based Health Alliance will establish a H2H Learning Collaborative to facilitate trainings and technical assistance on how to expand SBHC services beyond the traditional individual level of clinical care to include population health. Specifically, the Alliance will help H2H sites: identify their population health needs; develop wellness teams to implement action plans to address these needs; facilitate the sharing of challenges, solutions, and ideas among the H2H sites; and create sustainability plans to continue H2H innovations beyond the initiative.

Visit the Hallways to Health Toolkit

Project Updates

Learning from Four Years of Hallways to Health Data and Introducing the New Hallways to Health Digital Toolkit (Summer 2018)

Shortly after the Hallways to Health end-point meeting, Alliance staff evaluated the program data. Here’s what we found.

We’re pleased to report that our Hallways to Health (H2H) sites experienced statistically significant increases in perceived stakeholder support and engagement across all stakeholder groups: school administrators, teachers, school-based health center (SBHC) staff, parents, and youth.

  • School administrators are supporting SBHC efforts by providing requested support, promoting school health polices, and meeting regularly with SBHC staff.
  • As they engaged in school-wide wellness efforts, H2H sites strengthened their relationships with school administrators and enhanced SBHC professionals’ ability to get support for their other school health initiatives.
  • SBHC staff at H2H sites now collaborate with school staff and are involved in decision-making, sought after by the school/district, and participate fully in school-wide committees – all with the aim of advancing school population health outside their clinic walls.
  • Each site incorporated the H2H model into their SBHC operations. Other SBHC staff had roles in this work as well.
  • Teachers from H2H school sites now refer students to their SBHC, participate in SBHC-sponsored activities, and provide precious classroom time for SBHC-led health education.
  • Though student involvement in school population health at these sites was high before the start of the Hallways to Health initiative, it’s much higher now.

Ten of the thirteen H2H sites also reported at least one sustainable population level program, policy, or protocol in each of these three domains: healthy eating and active living, social and emotional wellness, and school staff wellness.

Read more our Hallways to Health findings.

Top healthy eating and active living efforts included:

  • School breakfast (69% of sites reported sustainable programs and policies)
  • School gardens (54% of sites reported sustainable gardens)
  • Healthy food policies (54% of sites reported sustainable healthy food policies)
  • Physical activity (38% of sites reported sustainable programs and policies)

Top social-emotional efforts involved:

  • School-wide mental health programs (62% of sites reported sustainable programs and policies)
  • Restorative practices (62% of sites reported sustainable restorative programs and policies)
  • Yoga and mindfulness (46% of sites reported sustainable practices)
  • Group mental health services (46% of sites reported sustainable group mental health services)
  • School-wide mental health assessments (23% of sites reported sustainable school-wide mental health assessments)

Top school employee wellness incorporated:

  • Professional development on student behavioral health (69% of sites reported sustainable professional development)
  • Nutritional programs (69% of sites reported sustainable nutrition efforts)
  • Physical activity programs (54% of sites reported sustainable physical activity efforts)

After the conclusion of our Hallways to Health initiative, Kaiser Permanente awarded the Alliance a one-year grant to craft training materials and dissemination strategies to bring H2H tools and resources to a far greater number of SBHCs. Our resulting online toolkit—Hallways to Health: Creating a School-Wide Culture of Wellness—emboldens the school health field to adopt population-level, school-wide health and wellness initiatives based on four years of experience with the Hallways to Health model.

To enable SBHC practitioners to design their own school-wide wellness strategy, Alliance program staff designed a H2H training curriculum and facilitated a series of four web-based and five in-person trainings to audiences in California, Arkansas, Louisiana, Delaware, Indiana, and Massachusetts.

To learn more about how you can adopt the transformative H2H model in your school community, check out this handy infographic and peruse our brand new virtual Hallways to Health toolkit!

Hallways to Health Hosts End Point Meeting at National Convention (Summer 2017)

The 13 Hallways to Health school-based health centers gathered for a final learning session at the 2017 National School-Based Health Care Convention in Long Beach, CA. The group explored how to communicate the importance of their work effectively and compellingly through elevator speeches and storytelling training. The energy and excitement in the room heightened when sites learned about their significant achievements and improvements in engaging school stakeholders and integrating into their schools and communities.

Read more about the End Point Meeting.

Attendees discussed their successes in establishing school gardens, breakfast programs, food policies, physical activity programs, and meditation/mindfulness programs; expanding risk assessments; and creating restorative justice practices. Sustainability strategies were also shared.

Following the End Point Meeting, the following Hallways to Health presenters led an engaging workshop at the convention on advancing population health at the convention:

  • Kay Sophar (Northwood High School, MD) on mindfulness in schools
  • Kylie Pybus (Milwaukie High School, OR) on the Milwaukie High’s Mental Health Task Force
  • Bianca LaChaux and Yvette Perez (John F. Kennedy High School, CA) on improving food access
  • Merry Grasska and Laura Garcia-Chandler (Rea Elementary, CA) on Rea Elementary’s Fit Club
  • Aurora Chavez (San Fernando High School, CA) on the restorative justice model

Thank you to the entire Hallways to Health cohort for being revolutionary leaders in population health at their schools. The Alliance will continue to encourage and support the field to innovate and adopt population health strategies and approaches through trainings, tools, and resources. We look forward to the future of Hallways to Health!

Alliance Develops Training to Help H2H Sites Continue Post Funding (Spring 2017)

As the end of the Hallways to Health (H2H) initiative draws near, the School-Based Health Alliance is developing a sustainability training series to help sites continue to advance population health needs in and beyond the three focused areas of the originally funded initiative. The training series features tools to: identify crucial stakeholders and partners, share the H2H approach and impact (success stories), and develop vision statements and action plans.

Read more about the training.

Two of the five modules are complete and have been distributed to each H2H site. The remaining three modules will be available by Summer 2017.

H2H Site Visits Reveal Lessons Learned (Winter 2016/2017)

Throughout 2016, the School-Based Health Alliance conducted site visits to each of its Hallways to Health (H2H) cohorts. The visits featured presentations from school, district, and clinic leaders alongside clinicians, health educators, and behavioral health professionals. Each visit helped to identify H2H successes, needs, and potential for growth and innovation.

Read more about the site visits.

The following themes represent a summary of these visits and the best practices to move beyond the clinic walls:

  • The most successful H2H sites were able to integrate with their schools and districts.
  • The use of interdisciplinary wellness teams increase H2H effectiveness and reach.
  • Training and resources on development and communications/marketing is vital for H2H success.
  • Data is essential to show need for and benefit of population health efforts.
  • SBH providers can serve as care coordinators to improve population health.

H2H Sites Expand Population Health Approaches, Work to Make them Sustainable (Spring 2016)

After piloting innovative population health interventions in 2014 and 2015, the School-Based Health Alliance challenged Hallways to Health (H2H) sites to make a long-term mark on their schools by ensuring innovations became part of regular school operations and/or aligned with a system wide policy or change.

Read more about the approaches.

For example, in addition to distributing snacks, having smoothie demonstrations, and offering nutrition education sessions, H2H sites instituted clinic policies to screen all patients for food insecurity, expanded the scope and reach of alternative breakfast and food distribution programs, and replaced junk food vending machines with machines offering healthier options.

In addition to fun runs and health fairs, H2H sites drafted and advocated for district-wide policies to increase mandatory recess time and limit the sale of unhealthy foods.  They piloted restorative justice and alternatives to suspension policies, established professional development days focused on supporting student emotional needs, mandated health education and mindfulness across schools, and designated school employee wellness spaces as well as reflective areas for students within classrooms. These changes will outlast H2H and will have long-term impacts on improving school health and climate.

H2H Sites to Conduct Assessment Identifying and Prioritizing Population Health Needs (Fall 2015)

In collaboration with the American Public Health Association’s (APHA) Center for School Health, the School-Based Health Alliance is providing a semester-long training series encouraging its Hallways to Health (H2H) sites to consider social determinants of health for their populations.

Read more about the assessment.

Each H2H site is using the training to conduct school-wide assessments to identify psychosocial and health issues and priorities for their students and school employees. Assessments include the Youth-Risk Behavior Surveillance System, the Oregon Health Teens Survey, the California Healthy Kids Survey, and the Rapid Assessment for Adolescent Preventive Services. Sites will use the data to create action plans to identify and prioritize population health needs.

H2H Sites Begin Implementing Population-level Health Interventions (Fall 2013)

Hallways to Health (H2H) sites and state affiliate organizations are identifying, prioritizing, and implementing population-level health interventions in their schools, communities, and states. The interventions, expected to last two years or more, address population health needs within three focus areas: healthy eating/active living, social-emotional health, and school employee wellness.

Read more about the interventions.
In Oregon and Washington, for example, students are participating in annual school-wide health fairs and four mini “health days” that offer martial arts, yoga, hands-on dance instruction, meditation, healthy youth relationships, healthy foods cooking class, and nutrition education. Several other H2H sites are equipping students with mindfulness techniques to reduce stress and avoid triggers of conflict.

In California, a youth wellness team is helping to educate students about healthy eating and to start a school breakfast program. Other H2H sites are tackling food insecurity through screening and referrals, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program enrollment assistance, and expanding free and reduced meals and snacks.

School employee wellness is also a focus area for H2H sites. In Maryland, school-based health staff are developing and distributing a staff wellness resource manual at its new teacher orientation. In Georgia, school staff are establishing an employee wellness committee that organized a walking club, a 30 Days Ab and Squat Fitness Challenge, and a wellness night for the entire school population.

15 SBHC Sites, Four State Affiliates Selected to Participate in the H2H Cohort! (Spring 2013)

The School-Based Health Alliance is excited to announce that four School-Based Health Alliance state affiliate organizations and 15 school-based health care (SBHC) sites have been selected to participate in the Hallways to Health (H2H) Learning Collaborative.

Read more about the cohort.
The Alliance will work with each state affiliate on guiding the 15 sites in how to plan and implement activities to drive improvements in three focus areas: healthy eating/active living, social-emotional health, and school employee wellness.

The H2H Learning Collaborative participants include:

Maryland Assembly on School-Based Health Care

  • Northwood High School, Silver Spring, MD
  • Coppin Clinic at St. Frances Academy, Baltimore, MD
  • Bladensburg Academy, Bladensburg, MD

Georgia School-Based Health Alliance

  • Lake Forest Elementary School, Sandy Springs, GA
  • Turner Elementary School, Albany, GA
  • Whitefoord Elementary School, Atlanta, GA

California School-Based Health Alliance

  • John F. Kennedy High School, Richmond, CA
  • Rice Elementary School, San Diego, CA
  • Rea Elementary School, Costa Mesa, CA
  • Roosevelt Middle School, Oakland, CA
  • San Fernando High School, San Fernando, CA

Oregon and Washington School-Based Health Alliances

  • Century High School, Hillsboro, OR
  • Merlo Station High School, Portland, OR
  • Milwaukie High School, Milwaukie, OR
  • Washington Middle School, Seattle, WA

Read about Hallways to Health on our blog!