Smart Source 2015-16 Executive Summary - Page 4

Introduction

Introduction

Overview
Colorado Healthy Schools Smart Source ( Smart Source ) is a comprehensive school-level inventory of health policies and practices completed by teams of school staff to assess their building ’ s health efforts . Healthy students perform better academically ( Basch , 2011 ), and Smart Source provides schools with specific guidance they can use to improve their school health policies and practices and ultimately , impact their students ’ health and academic outcomes . Additionally , Smart Source serves as a statewide data collection effort that yields state and regional data to identify strengths and gaps related to school health in Colorado and to inform how resources , such as funding and professional development , are allocated . Items on the Smart Source tool are aligned with both the Coordinated School Health Model and the Whole School , Whole Community , Whole Child Model from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( 2016 ) and span these nine content areas :
• General Health Policies and Practices
• Counseling , Psychological , and Social Services
• Nutrition
• Healthy and Safe School Environment
• Physical Education / Physical Activity
• Family , Community , and Student Involvement
• Health Education
• Staff Health Promotion
• Health Services
Background
Smart Source is funded by Kaiser Permanente and is a partnership between The Colorado Education Initiative ( CEI ), the Colorado Department of Education ( CDE ), and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment ( CDPHE ). The Smart Source tool and methodology have been developed by numerous stakeholders , including school and district representatives , researchers , evaluators , funders , state agency representatives , and other school health and safety experts . This diverse group informed how Smart Source can best fulfill its purposes : 1 ) to serve as an inventory of health and wellness practices and policies for schools , 2 ) to reduce the burden on schools by streamlining multiple school health tools into one effort , 3 ) to improve the quality of school-level health policy and practice data collected , and 4 ) to increase the number of schools assessing their health policies and practices .
Tool and Methodology
Throughout the tool development process , items were assessed and refined for objectivity , specificity , and feasibility . Prior to the 2014- 15 pilot with 77 participating schools throughout Colorado , CEI staff conducted five think-aloud interviews with school staff who would serve as site coordinators , those who oversee completion of the Smart Source tool in their school , to assess how respondents were interpreting items , how they would facilitate completion of an item to which they did not readily know the answer , and how long it would take a school to complete the inventory . Following the first pilot in 2014-15 , items identified by respondents as problematic in the online tool through focus groups and various analyses were flagged for refinement by content experts . 1 Once refinements were finalized , Smart Source was again piloted in the 2015-16 school year . Results from this second pilot will be highlighted throughout this report . 2
During this refinement period , CEI staff also sought participant feedback about the implementation of Smart Source . A key feature of the Smart Source process is that schools are asked to designate one site coordinator to oversee the completion and submission of the inventory into an online platform . Based off feedback from participants , schools are encouraged to complete the assessment as a team to achieve higher accuracy on their responses and more meaningful results . Therefore , we strongly recommend that the site coordinator convene or , at a minimum , gather input from the following staff :
• Administrators
• School counselors
• P . E . teachers
• Food service staff
• Health educators
• Members of the school wellness team
• School nurses / school nurse consultants • Students , parents , and community partners
In the spring of 2017 , CEI will release a validity study that will provide a detailed account of the development of the Smart Source tool and methodology .
Smart Source provides schools with a comprehensive tool that inventories the best practices related to school health and safety in order to inform school and district policies and practices . Smart Source provides schools with specific guidance they can use to improve their school health efforts in order to positively impact the health of their students .
1 For more information on the tool development process , please reference the Smart Source Validity Study to be released in Spring 2017 . 2 To see results from the first pilot , please reference the 2014-15 Executive Summary : http :// www . coloradoedinitiative . org / wp-content / uploads / 2015 / 10 / SS _ WhitePaper _
VF . pdf .
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