Senator Brownsberger submitted the following written testimony to the Joint Committee on Education.
TO: Joint Committee on Education
FROM: Senator William N. Brownsberger
RE: H421, An Act relative to comprehensive health education in schools
DATE: May 9, 2013
I am writing with regard to H421, An Act relative to comprehensive health education in schools. Many young people engage in risky behaviors with potential implications for their long-term health. Educating youth on the adverse effects of health-risk behaviors such as unprotected sex, violence, physical inactivity and substance abuse, will result in substantial health cost savings down the road. These programs will also help curb health-risk practices linked with academic failure. Currently, Massachusetts is one of only 12 states that do not require districts or schools to follow national or state health education standards.
The aim of this bill is to provide comprehensive, skills-based health education which has been proven to positively impact key public health priorities, thereby reducing both health care costs and academic failure.
I hope that the Committee will report H421 favorably.