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Tai Po Shun Tak Wong Kin Sheung Memorial School AM, Hong Kong
  1. A Lee1,
  2. J R Ashton2
  1. 1Department of Community and Family Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
  2. 2Joint Editor, Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr A Lee
 Department of Community and Family Medicine, Faculty of Medicine 4th Floor, School of Public Health, Prince of Wales Hospital Shatin, NT, Hong Kong;

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The school started developing the Healthy School concept in 1999, after two teachers had enrolled in the Professional Diploma Course in Health Promotion and Health Education provided by the Chinese University of Hong Kong. They had been launching various health promotion programmes, and the priority areas were evidence based according to the 1999 youth risk behavioural surveillance, which highlighted three important areas for attention: unhealthy eating habits, lack of exercise, and emotional problems. The school has implemented a reform of the school tuck shop, known as “revolution on snack”. Parents have been involved in helping to prepare healthy food. The school has asked community leaders, professionals, and academics to share their experiences of life with students.

During the outbreak of SARS, the school was well equipped to implement preventive measures and upgrade hygiene practices. The school has also assisted in the production of an educational video, “School against SARS” to help schools to prepare to resume classes after a period of suspension due to SARS.

These photographs were taken at Tai Po Shun Tak Wong Kin Sheung Memorial School in March 2003, just before SARS became a public health problem in Hong Kong. As described by Professor Albert Lee, schools such as Tai Po Shun Tak Wong Kin Sheung, and others of its kind participating in the Healthy Schools initiative as part of Hong Kong’s Healthy Cities work, were in a strong position to respond to the challenge of prevention.

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The Healthy Schools mural produced by pupils and staff depicts aspects of a healthy lifestyle and environment.

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Sanitary hygiene continues to be important in public health (left). The quiet corner provides an opportunity for young pupils to experience contemplation and a bit of reading (right).

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The tuck shop in Tai Po Shun Tak Wong Kin Sheung Memorial School sells an enticing variety of low fat, low salt foods (left). A comparatively new problem for school pupils is the weight of books that they are expected to carry to and from school. At the Healthy School, pupils’ rucksacks are subject to random sampling to ensure that the young and developing frames are not being asked to carry too much wight (right).

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A public health monitor ensures that his co-students wash their hands after visiting the lavatory.

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