The journey towards comprehensive school health within an aboriginal community
MetadataShow full item record
The purpose of this research is to describe the journey towards Comprehensive School Health at two Aboriginal elementary schools. An advocate and a healthy schools committee were identified at both schools and were responsible for developing initiatives to create a healthy school community. A case study was used to gather an in-depth understanding of Comprehensive School Health for the two schools involved. As a researcher, I functioned within the role of a participantobserver, as I was actively involved in the programs and initiatives completed in both schools. The research process included: the pilot study, ethics clearance and distribution of letters of invitation and consent forms. Data collection included 16 semi-structured, guided interviews with principals, teachers, and stupents. Participant observations included sites of the gymnasium, classroom, playgrounds, school environments, bulletin boards as well as artifact analysis of decuments such as school newsletters, physical education schedules and school handbooks. The interviews were transcribed and coded using an inductive approach which involves finding patterns, themes and categories from the data (patton, 2002). Research questions guided the findings as physical activity, physical education, nutrition and transportation were discussed. Themes developed t~rough coding were teacherstudent interactions, cultural traditions, time constraints and professional development and were discussed using a Comprehensive School Health framework.