HJNO Jul/Aug 2023

58 JUL / AUG 2023 I  HEALTHCARE JOURNAL OF NEW ORLEANS COLUMN COMMUNITY HEALTH Fifty million students are enrolled in public schools across the United States, but only 2,500 school- based health centers exist according to the national School-Based Health Alliance. health centers not only increase student seat time in classrooms but help decrease dropout rates and improve student health and overall academic success. With a post-pandemicmental health cri- sis facing our nation’s youth, school-based health centers are an evidence-based strategy that unites healthcare and educa- tion to treat the whole child. “Think about a teacher sitting in a classroom with about 20 to 25 kids. Every child that comes into INA SOCIETY focused on equity, diversity, and inclusion, the need for more access to healthcare on campuses is great. School- based health centers offer a safe space, inclusive of all youth and adolescents re- gardless of their age, sex, race, ethnicity, insurance status, or lack thereof. The centers are a win-win not only for the students but for their parents and school districts as well. The School-Based Health Alliance says that school-based Why School-based Health Centers Matter Evidence-based Intervention for Fostering Student Success