Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership


Dr. Keith Williams


This qualitative case study examined the development and implementation process of a school-based health center (SBHC) in a school district in Western Arkansas. Researchers and health professionals agree that children who are in good health are in a better position to learn (Allensworth & Kolbe, 1987). Little (2009) noted student health, being an underlying factor in educational achievement, is garnering educator focus to improve academic success.

SBHCs are developing across the country as potential solutions to improve children’s access to quality health care (Allison et al., 2007). SBHCs provide opportunities to remove barriers like geography, transportation, and cost for impoverished families to access quality health care. Addressing student healthcare needs provides opportunity for students to reach their full academic potential.

Data instruments used in this study were focus group interviews with the researcher acting as moderator of the focus group interviews. The focus group interviews with the participants involved in the establishment of the SBHC provided rich data to describe the process from developmental policy through daily operations of the SBHC. This qualitative study described the circumstances surrounding the state policy makers, state agencies, and advocacy groups working together to allow the establishment of SBHCs in Arkansas. Additionally, the study describes how the local school board, school administration, and community leadership identified the need to improve student, staff, and community health and chose to work together to provide access to quality healthcare on the school campus.

The research findings indicate that the SBHC model established in the school district in Western Arkansas can be replicated provided stakeholders work together with fidelity to meet the needs of the school district children, staff, and families in the community. Reducing the barriers to academic achievement improves the opportunity for academic success and ultimately the potential for an improved life.

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Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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