Immediate Influence

Health education and prevention

Parent construct: Effective Schools

Health education programs are an important component of quality education. The academic success of adolescents is linked to their emotional, social, and physical health. Evidence-based health education programs can decrease substance use, risky sex, violence, criminal behaviors, physical inactivity, poor diet, and other health-risk behaviors that put student health at risk and lead to academic failure. Decreasing student health-risk behaviors is linked with improved academic performance, attendance, and ability to pay attention in class. School-based health education and prevention programs also protect adolescents against suicide, HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancy, obesity, and diabetes.1,2


Related Interventions




  1. Joe, S., Joe, E., & Rowley, L. L. (2009). Consequences of physical health and mental illness risks for academic achievement in grades K-12. Review of Research in Education, 33(1), 283-309.  

  2. Needham, B.L., Crosnoe, R., Muller, C. Academic Failure in Secondary School: The Inter-Related Role of Physical Health Problems and Educational Context. Social Problems. 51, 569-586.