The mission of the American School Health Association is to build the capacity of its members to plan, develop, coordinate, implement, evaluate, and advocate for effective school health strategies that contribute to optimal health and academic outcomes for all children and youth.
The American School Health Association envisions healthy students who learn and achieve in safe and healthy environments nurtured by caring adults functioning within coordinated school and community support systems.
The Association is a multidisciplinary organization of administrators, counselors, dieticians, nutritionists, health educators, physical educators, psychologists, school health coordinators, school nurses, school physicians, and social workers.
Health and learning are directly linked and are essential to the development of healthy, resilient citizens.
Schools are uniquely positioned to help children and youth acquire life-long, health-promoting knowledge, skills, attitudes, and behaviors.
The most effective and efficient means of promoting healthy citizens is through a coordinated, school health approach.
Those working in school health settings should be highly qualified and practice evidence-based health and education strategies.
Schools should be safe, nurturing environments that facilitate learning for all.
ASHA has more than 2,000 members in 56 countries. More than one-half the members practice in K-12 schools or advise and oversee health education or health services programs in schools or state agencies charged with managing school health programs.
The American School Health Association was founded as the American Association of School Physicians on October 27, 1927, by 325 physicians at the annual meeting of the American Public Health Association in Cincinnati. The charter members represented 29 states and Canada. The first president was William A. Howe, M.D., Buffalo, N.Y.
Interest in the Association grew so rapidly that in 1936, the American Association of School Physicians opened its membership to all professionals interested in promoting school health. The organization officially became the American School Health Association.