Boston Public Health Commission - This Commission has put together a Healthy Beverages Toolkit for organizations, institutions, and government agencies that outlines a comprehensive approach to improving the beverage environment.
California Department of Education - Check CDE's "Drinking Water for Students in Schools" page for more on how to provide water in schools.
California Food Policy Advocates - Check CFPA’s website for more information on promoting water in schools, including fact sheets, reports, and policy updates. Click here to view a helpful illustrated handout of options for making water available in schools created by CFPA. Please share additional options with firstname.lastname@example.org.
California Project LEAN - California Project LEAN (Leaders Encouraging Activity and Nutrition) is a joint program of the California Department of Public Health and the Public Health Institute. California Project LEAN works to advance nutrition and physical activity policy in schools and communities in order to prevent obesity and its associated chronic diseases. Their efforts are centered around youth and parent empowerment approaches, policy and environmental change strategies, and community-based solutions that improve nutrition and physical activity environments.
California Obesity Prevention Program (COPP) - The California Obesity Prevention Program (COPP) is a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) funded program within the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) that is working towards the goal of increasing physical activity, improving nutrition, and preventing obesity among all Californians.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a webpage focusing on adolescent and school health, specifically on water access in schools. This webpage provides links to the Institute of Medicine's report on nutrition standards in schools, research that shows the benefits of water consumption, and other key resources. Click here to view their 2012 health equity resource toolkit for addressing obesity disparities that includes resources for promoting healthy beverage consumption.
Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) - The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) has a number of resources on their website related to child nutrition. This link includes an archived webcast of a webinar hosted by FRAC featuring speakers from California Food Policy Advocates, USDA, and the California Endowment.
National Policy & Legal Analysis Network (NPLAN) - NPLAN produced this useful fact sheet on promoting water consumption in schools.
School Nutrition Association - The School Nutrition Association represents school food service staff across the country. The SNA website has useful updates and resources related to school nutrition.
University of California, Berkeley - Tap water is not just for K-12! Read about UC Berkeley's efforts to promote tap water, including their campaign materials.
USDA, Food and Nutrition Service – The United States Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) administers the school meal programs. The FNS website provides updates, resources, guidance, and more from the federal government on school nutrition. Click here for USDA's April memo on implementing the federal water in schools requirement.
Water Woes: Recommendations for Creating Healthier School Environments - This is a great resource from California's North Cost Nutrition and Fitness Collaborative on the importance of promoting water consumption and the need to do so.
Take Back the Tap - "Take Back the Tap" is a campaign run by Food and Water Watch to encourage tap water consumption and reduce bottled water use. The website has tons of information on the importance of tap water and how to push tap water consumption. Their report on how to promote tap water is a great guide for how a school can encourage water consumption.
Water First: Think your Drink - This colorful website contains tips and tools for parents and kids on the importance of drinking water and reducing consumption of sugary drinks.
Water Safety Resources
Water safety is a concern in some communities. Click here for an overview on the topic and how it might impact your school.
Your local school wellness policy can be a useful tool to establish higher expectations and standards for the foods and beverages available at your school.
Evaluation Tool - This evaluation tool from the Yale University’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity provides a tool for evaluating your wellness policy.
USDA, Food and Nutrition Service - This page from USDA’s FNS provides support for developing a wellness policy.
Water Access in Schools: Model Wellness Policy Language - This resource from the National Policy and Legal Analysis Network (NPLAN) can help promote water consumption in schools. The "policy package" has a set of model goals and actions for schools to incorporate into their wellness policies.
Rethink Your Drink Resources
"Drinkin' That Water" - This first-prize winning video from San Francisco, CA features a youth who creatively raps about why drinking water is important.
Soda Free Summer - A campaign targeted to youth to promote water consumption and reduce sugar-sweetened beverage consumption. While it is designed for the summer time, the Soda Free Summer campaign can be adapted for use during the school year.
"Drink Water!" Said the Otter - A campaign targeted to kids to promote water consumption. The link includes resources in English and Spanish.
Bay Area Nutrition and Physical Activity Collaborative: Sugar Savvy Materials - Resources in English and Spanish on reducing sugar-sweetened beverage consumption.
Rethink your Drink - Information and resources from the CDC and the City of San Francisco on reducing sugar-sweetened beverage consumption and promoting water consumption.
Policy Brief: Fulfilling the Promise of Free Water in K-12 Schools, University of California San Francisco, July 2012This policy brief presents principal study findings and key policy recommendations from a study that examined drinking water access, water-related policies, and practices, as well as barriers to improving water access and intake in California public schools. While all study schools reported offering free drinking water in at least one location on campus, one in four schools reported no such access where meals are served despite the state and federal requirements. Click here for the 2-page version of the brief.
Consumption of Sports Drinks by Children and Adolescents, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, June 2012This new research review and issue brief examine consumption of sports drinks by children and adolescents. The #1 recommendation: Fresh, safe, and free drinking water should be available at all times for children and adolescents, especially in schools and on athletic fields, recreational facilities, out-of-school time programs, and parks. Read the related issue brief.
Bringing Free Drinking Water Back to California Schools, Public Health Law and Policy, December 2011
This document provides an overview of drinking water access in California schools that can help schools comply with new requirements and support student health. This report also highlights strategies to make drinking water more readily available in school settings, including ways for parents and community members to get involved.
Teaching the Tap: Why America's Schools Need Funding for Water, Food and Water Watch, October 2010
This report describes the importance of providing tap water in schools, the challenges of doing so, and the need to establish a dedicated source of federal funding that would help schools fund their efforts to promote water consumption on campus.
CFPA Report, October 2009 - Improving Water Consumption in Schools: Challenges, Promising Practices, and Next Steps
California has taken some good steps forward in getting rid of sugary drinks in schools. But, we haven't done as good a job of promoting healthy choices, namely water. Water is an essential nutrient and is (obviously) calorie-free. Best of all, tap water is free! Unfortunately, a recent survey found that 40% of responding schools reported having no access to free water in cafeterias.
PREVENTING CHRONIC DISEASE - Public Health Research, Practice and Policy - Vol No. 2, March 2010, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
This article explores perceptions about drinking water provision in a large California school district. The study found that while stakeholders believed water was available, concerns existed around appeal, taste, appearance, and safety of the water dispensed by fountains. Stakeholders also cited barriers, some real and some mistaken, to promoting drinking water consumption. The study finds that collaborative efforts among schools, communities, and policymakers are needed to improve drinking water consumption in schools by students.
Rebecca Muckelbauer, Lars Libuda, Kerstin Clausen, André Michael Toschke, Thomas Reinehr and Mathilde Kersting
PEDIATRICS - Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Volume 123, Number 4, April 2009.
This study tested whether an intervention to increase access to water and provide more education about water consumption was effective in preventing overweight in elementary school children. Low-income students in one school received an intervention of greater access to water and classroom lessons on promoting water consumption while similar students in another school did not receive any intervention. The study found that the risk of overweight reduced in the intervention school by 31 percent. The authors concluded that improving access to water and promoting education on the importance of water consumption was an effective obesity prevention strategy.
Read more about this study in this article from the New York Times.
Looking to learn more about research related to Water in Schools? Check these out:
Observations of Drinking Water Access in School Food Service Areas Before Implementation of Federal and State School Water Policy, California, 2011, by Patel AI, Chandran K, Hampton KE, Hecht K, Grumbach JM, Kimura AT, et al. Prev Chron Dis 2012.
Increasing the Availability and Consumption of Drinking Water in Middle Schools: A Pilot Study, by Patel AI, Bogart LM, Elliott MN, Lamb S, Uyeda KE, Hawes-Dawson J, Klein DJ, Schuster MA. Prev Chron Dis 2011.
Encouraging Consumption of Water in School and Child Care Settings: Access, Challenges, and Strategies for Improvement, by Patel AI, Cabana MD. American Journal of Public Health 2011.