Byline: JAIME Z. GALVEZ TAN, M.D., M.P.H. President, Health Futures Foundation Inc.
"POOR health is the number one reason why children drop out of school" - this is according to a World Bank study conducted a few years ago. Children get sick, miss school for a few weeks, and then refuse to return. This was one of the considerations foremost in the minds of a team that was commissioned by the Social and Human Sciences Committee of UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM) to review the health content in public school textbooks and their accompanying teachers' manuals. This was brought about by the need to bring Filipino students, teachers, textbook writers, and curriculum planners up-to-date with a holistic understanding of wellness.
Positive attitudes and basic habits of good health must be introduced early in the minds and hearts of our children. Without health orientation that is preventive, considerate, self-empowering, mutually responsible, and rational, a community's progress is hampered. Emerging challenges for primitive, preventive, curative and rehabilitative health require students to become better informed about a total approach to positive development and well-being.
Instructional materials, especially textbooks, serve as the foundation of classroom instruction; hence, the inclusion of accurate, factual, and timely health content in public school textbooks is essential. For this purpose, we conducted a review to assess …