Reliability and Validity of the School Health Policies and Programs Study 2000 Questionnaires. (Research Papers)

By Brener, Nancy D.; Kann, Laura et al. | Journal of School Health, January 2003 | Go to article overview

Reliability and Validity of the School Health Policies and Programs Study 2000 Questionnaires. (Research Papers)


Brener, Nancy D., Kann, Laura, Smith, Timothy K., Journal of School Health


Between January and July 2000, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted the School Health Policies and Programs Study (SHPPS) 2000, the most comprehensive assessment of school health policies and programs ever undertaken. (1) SHPPS 2000 examined eight components of the school health program: health education, physical education and activity, health services, mental health and social services, food service, school policy and environment, faculty and staff health promotion, and family and community involvement. Data were collected from all states; a nationally representative sample of school districts; a nationally representative sample of elementary, middle/junior high, and senior high schools; and teachers of randomly selected elementary school classes and randomly selected required health and physical education classes in middle/junior and senior high schools.

For each of five components--health services, mental health and social services, food service, school policy and environment, and faculty and staff health promotion--three questionnaires were developed, one each for the state, district, and school levels. For each of two components--health education and physical education--a fourth questionnaire was developed for the classroom level. Questions addressing the final component--family and community involvement--were integrated into the questionnaires for the seven other components. In total, 23 questionnaires were developed.

Questionnaire development took two years and included extensive literature reviews; expert panel meetings; reviews by representatives of federal agencies and national organizations; cognitive testing with school, district, and state education agency volunteers; and a formal field test of four questionnaires. Additional information about questionnaire development was published previously. (2) Because the questionnaires were developed specifically for SHPPS 2000, no information was available on their reliability and validity. Few studies have assessed the reliability and validity of questionnaires designed to assess school health policies and programs. (3)

The questionnaire development process for SHPPS 2000 helped ensure the questionnaires would produce high-quality data, but CDC also designed and implemented a data quality substudy in conjunction with the administration of SHPPS 2000. The substudy helped assess the validity of the state- and district-level questionnaires and the test-retest reliability of the school- and classroom-level questionnaires.

METHODS

State- and District-Level Data

State- and district-level data for SHPPS 2000 were collected by mail using self-administered questionnaires. For the data quality substudy, a subsample of respondents participated in telephone interviews after returning their questionnaires. For each of the seven state-level and seven district-level questionnaires, seven respondents were contacted for interviews. These respondents were selected by recontacting the person returning every fifth state-level questionnaire and every 50th district-level questionnaire for that component. This strategy permitted the selection of respondents for the substudy who returned their questionnaires soon after they received them as well as those who returned questionnaires later in the data collection period, after extensive follow-up efforts. Forty-one of 49 possible state-level interviews and 43 of 49 possible district-level interviews were completed.

Interviews lasted approximately 10 to 20 minutes and focused on three issues: 1) how well respondents understood the term "policy" as defined in the questionnaires; 2) how familiar respondents were with state or district policies addressing the questionnaire topics; and 3) how closely state or district policies corresponded to the focus of the SHPPS questions.

A few days before each interview, respondents received a list of questions from the original questionnaire and a copy of their written answers to these questions in the event that they had not kept a copy. …

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