Whole School, Whole Community & Whole Child


QUESTION: What can we do to help our students and schools?

ANSWER: Get involved with your school systems by providing resources and opportunities for students to succeed.

The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) Whole Child approach is an effort to transition from a focus on narrowly defined academic achievement to one that promotes the long-term development and success of all children.

ASCD’S summary of the “Whole School, Whole Community & Whole Child” suggested the following 5 tenets to make the student the focal point:

  • Each student enters school healthy and learns about and practices a healthy lifestyle.
  • Each student learns in an environment that is physically and emotionally safe for students and adults.
  • Each student is actively engaged in learning and is connected to the school and broader community.
  • Each student has access to personalized learning and is supported by qualified, caring adults.
  • Each student is challenged academically and prepared for success in college or further study and for employment and participation in a global environment.

This “Whole School, Whole Community, & Whole Child” approach follows a systems-based approach addressing eight components of the school as a venue for health promotion and disease prevention:

  • Health education
  • Physical education
  • School health services
  • Healthy and safe school environment
  • Counseling, psychological, and social services
  • Family and community involvement
  • Health promotion for staff
  • Nutrition services.

For more information about the “Whole School, Whole Community, and Whole Child” approach go to: http://www.ascd.org/programs/The-Whole-Child/Healthy.aspx

The national Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) which monitors six types of health-risk behaviors that contributes to the leading causes of death and disability among youth and adults and is housed within the Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH) at the CDC, has just released their “trends” on how our schools are doing on health prevention and health promotion.

The Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) monitors six types of health-risk behaviors, including:

  • Behaviors that contribute to unintentional injuries and violence
  • Sexual behaviors related to unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV infection
  • Alcohol and other drug use
  • Tobacco use
  • Unhealthy dietary behaviors
  • Inadequate physical activity

YRBSS also measures the prevalence of obesity and asthma and other priority health-related behaviors plus sexual identity and sex of sexual contacts.

YRBSS is a national school-based survey conducted by CDC and more information on the YRBSS can be found at: http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/data/yrbs/results.htm

Bottom line: The trends are decreasing nationally for community members to participate in prevention education on alcohol, drugs, tobacco and violence. Schools are not tapping into the resources that their local communities can provide to help promote the health and well-being of each student.  For more information on the “YRBBS trends” go to: http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/data/shpps/pdf/2014factsheets/trends_shpps2014.pdf

In Northern Wisconsin, the Oneida, Vilas and Forest County communities are coming together as combined Coalition of Community members to help all its residents especially the youth, to engage in positive behaviors to promote healthy lifestyles.  The name of this NEW Coalition is: Northwoods COPE which stands for Community, Outreach, Prevention and Education. We are looking for interested members who want to promote healthy lifestyles and positive mental health activities in our schools and our communities. If you are interested in joining us, please contact the Oneida County Health Department at: 715-369-6111 for more information. We are currently in the process of creating a work plan that will address the health needs of these three communities.

Share this information
Categorized as Blog - Family Health, Community Health, General Information, Uncategorized

Contact Us

Oneida County Health Department
100 West Keenan Street
Rhinelander, WI 54501
Hours: 8:00am - 4:30pm Mon-Fri

Telephone (715) 369-6111
Fax (715) 369-6112


To report a public health emergency or to report a notifiable disease after hours, please contact dispatch at 715-361-5100.

Click here to view map and additional contact information.



Mental Health Hotline - Mental Health Crisis? Forest, Vilas and Oneida County call 1-888-299-1188.

Smoking Cessation - Break free of cigarettes. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW.

Disaster Distress Line - Stress, anxiety, and other depression are common after a disaster. Call 1-800-985-5990 or visit the Disaster Distress Line to talk.

Wisconsin First Step – Information on services for children and youth with special needs, their families and providers. Call 1-800-642-7837 to speak with a parent specialist.

Maternal and Child Health Hotline – Call 1-800-722-2295 for information on BadgerCare Plus, WIC, HealthCheck, maternal depression, Prenatal Care Coordination, family planning, developmental screenings, and more.