An Open Access article published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review Journal.
The full article is available as a PDF download.


Kathleen J. Porter, PhD, RD
Kelly Shomo, MPH
Sandra Curwood, PhD, RDN
Sarah A. Misyak, PhD, MPH


School-based interventions are common approaches to address childhood obesity; however, there is little understanding of strategies that can foster their implementation into schools. In this study, we aimed to identify goals and the specific strategies selected by school nutrition directors (SNDs) in Virginia to execute school-based interventions.


Between 2018 and 2019, SNDs in Virginia participated in Team Nutrition workshops through which they created action plans. We carried out a content analysis of 132 action plans collected from 100 school divisions. We developed codes deductively and inductively. The codes captured plan completion, goals, and strategies. Each plan was independently coded by 2 coders.


Action plans included 1.2 goals (SD = 0.54) and 3.9 strategies per goal (SD = 2.1). Goals were most commonly related to improving menus or increasing participation in the school meal programs. The strategies varied based on the goals. However, obtaining buy-in from school personnel and students was the most commonly included goal (64.4%) across plans. The level of action plan completion decreased with each subsequent section of the worksheet.


Emerging patterns identified in this study suggest SNDs’ strategy selection is based on goals and that trainings should be tailored to promote the development of skills required to execute optimal strategies.

Source: Health Behavior and Policy Review, Volume 8, Number 6, November 2021, pp. 585-595(11)
Publisher: Paris Scholar Publishing Ltd.