Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education
An Evidence-Based Practice
The Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education (Michigan Model) facilitates interdisciplinary learning through educational lessons that integrate health education into other curricula, including language arts, social studies, science, math, and art. Lessons emphasize active student participation, especially in developing and practicing role-play strategies. The program is for K-12 students and is designed for implementation as part of the core school curriculum. The model contains 43-58 classroom instructional lessons per year. Each lesson lasts 30 to 45 minutes, depending on grade level. The educational materials include lessons that incorporate knowledge, attitude, and skills-based instruction as well as social and emotional learning. The Michigan Model's comprehensive health approach has a building-block format that introduces, fully develops, and then reinforces key health promotion and prevention messages over a period of years. Parent and family involvement pieces are also included as part of student instruction in key content areas. The program includes violence prevention lessons throughout the elementary grades and two complete modules for grades 7-8 and 9-12 that cover conflict resolution skills and safety in violent situations, sexual harassment, and abusive relationships. There are also modules in grades 7-8 and 9-12 on tobacco and alcohol, nutrition, physical activity, and HIV/AIDS. Healthy sexual development is also covered.
Goal / Mission
The goals of this program are to establish a single application for school-based youth prevention programs; provide a common language and approach for parent, community, and student health programs; and reinforce prevention messages from a variety of sources.
Results / Accomplishments
Evaluations to date have been conducted at the elementary and secondary levels and focused on a variety of health areas. The most comprehensive evaluation was a randomized controlled trial involving 52 public schools, over 321 teachers, and 2,512 students followed longitudinally in fourth and fifth grade, which showed that students who received the Michigan Model curriculum had significantly better health outcomes compared to a control group in several areas: social and emotional health, interpersonal skills, aggressive behavior, safety attitudes and skills, physical activity skills, nutrition behavior, drug refusal skills, recent alcohol and tobacco use, and intentions to use alcohol and smoke cigarettes. In another study, an untreated nonequivalent comparison group quasi-experimental design was used with a pretest and posttest. Evaluation results showed that the Michigan Model curriculum was effective at slowing increasing rates of alcohol use and misuse, cigarette smoking, cocaine use, and other drug use. Compared with the comparison group, students in the treatment group in sixth and seventh grades demonstrated significantly smaller increases in the frequency of use of all substances (alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana, cocaine, and other drugs) at the end of the seventh grade. In addition, students in the treatment group increased their knowledge of alcohol pressures, effects, and skills to resist more than their counterparts in the comparison group.
About this Promising Practice
- Primary Contact
- Jessica Shaffer, School Health Education Consultant
P.O. Box 30195
Lansing, MI 48909
Health / Children's Health
Health / Teen & Adolescent Health
Education / Student Performance K-12
- Michigan Department of Community Health, Division of Family and Community Health
- The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention's Model Programs Guide (MPG)
- Date of publication
- For more details
- Target Audience
- Children, Teens