The Massachusetts Public Health Council passed a regulation that requires schools to measure the Body Mass Index (BMI) of students in grades 0ne, four, seven, and ten this year. As a result of this regulation, parents of students in the appropriate grades will receive a letter from the schools regard their child’s Body Mass Index (BMI) in the next few weeks. This effort was developed with input from school nurses and is aimed at helping to improve student health. The state’s assumption is that BMI can be easily calculated using existing data – namely height and weight – that schools already have. The increase in BMI screening has been coupled with a lowering of the requirements associated with hearing and scoliosis screening (taken from the Superintendent’s Memo January 22, 2009).
Please contact your school’s nurse if you have any questions about the screening process itself or the results. The state also asks us to forward resources to parents. The following links include a resource-filled website and a background information power point.
Mass in Motion – http://www.mass.gov/massinmotion/
Background Power Point – CTSobesity