Making schools healthy

Students perform better when they show up for class healthy and ready to learn.

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Regular communications, state-level advocacy & education are only some of what you receive as a NYSBHA member. Join today by clicking the button below:


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SBHC Staff Testimonials

“SBHC services during a pandemic has definitely been a major transition. One, that I think we took it in stride and was able to continue great work through the use of telehealth. Our mental health division was able to transition to telehealth a week and medical shortly after.”​

-Tiffany Watson-Labbate, Behavioral Health Supervisor

SBHC Staff Testimonials

“The SBHC functioned as a family with everyone having their piece of the puzzle to function. The most important thing was to keep the connection between the staff, faculty, students & parents. This was done through regular meetings with the SBHC staff and the school… The pandemic showed the strengths and flexibility of the staff to adapt to the change.”​

-Jeannine Brooks, Nurse Practitioner

SBHC Staff Testimonials

“We’ve been trying to accommodate our kids as much as possible in the safest way possible during the pandemic. Meeting up with the kids and being able to give them a service that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to get during this crisis – that was really a highlight for us.”​

-Jalissa Vargas, Nurse and Health Educator

COVID-19, SBHCs and Schools


NYSBHA’s task force created a guide for schools with SBHCs during COVID-19

Latest News & Events

Keep up to date with Alliance Advocacy Alerts and state & national news by signing up for our e-newsletter


School-Based Health: Easy Access to Care Article Authored by Dr. Chris Kjolhede

School-Based Health: Easy Access to Care By Chris Kjolhede January 19, 2022 School-Based Health: Easy Access to Care - Public Health Post Madison and her mother recently moved into a community with a school-based health center.  Madison has had a difficult time...

NYS Counties Struggle to Find School Covid Testing Supplies

ITHACA, NY (WSKG) — New York Gov. Kathy Hochul wants schools to adopt test-to-stay programs. But with less local contact tracing and changes to the isolation process, some counties say a test-to-stay program might not make sense anymore. If you’re not familiar with...

A Special New York Times ‘The Morning’ Article: A Crisis for American Children

January 4, 2022 By David Leonhardt Good morning. The pandemic has created a crisis for American children. Idle school buses in Detroit yesterday.Emily Elconin for The New York Times No way to grow up American children are starting 2022 in crisis. I have long been...

NYSBHA Provides Testimony for NYS Assembly Standing Committee on Health Public Hearing on Medicaid Program Efficacy and Sustainability

Alliance Executive Director Sarah Murphy attended the NYS Assembly Standing Committee on Health's Public Hearing:  Medicaid Program Efficacy and Sustainability November 1st to provide testimony in response to the topic: Whether some Medicaid services or populations...

School-Based Health Centers and Pediatric Practice

Chris Kjolhede and April C. Lee; COUNCIL ON SCHOOL HEALTH Pediatrics September 2021, e2021053758; DOI:   Abstract School-based health centers (SBHCs) are unique health care settings for our nation’s school-aged children and...

Housing, Food, Gun Violence: Providers Seek to Shrink Health Gaps

Original article written by Joseph P. Williams for U.S News   Hospitals and health systems are getting more serious about tackling health disparities tied to social problems. Awake at 4 a.m. one morning last November, Felicia Silva of Albuquerque, New Mexico, assumed...

29 Organizations Promoting Food Literacy in Schools

Original article written by Sara Bond for FoodTank Food literacy, the understanding that food choices affect human and planetary health, can be an important tool for building resilient individuals and communities. A combination of nutrition knowledge, culinary skill,...

Looking for Mental Health Care and Falling Into an ‘Internet Wormhole’

Original article written by Marianna McMurdock for The 74 58% of Young New Yorkers Didn’t Get the Help They Needed During the Pandemic. In-school mental health supports A number of schools adopted new mental health initiatives because of and during the pandemic to...

Connell Sanders: Worcester Public Schools’ best kept secret is in the nurse’s office

Original article written by Sarah Connell Sanders for Worcester Magazine   Family Health Center of Worcester continues to operate Doherty’s SBHC, along with six others across the Worcester Public Schools. Edward M. Kennedy operates five SBHC’s in the city, including...

Institute for Family Health, New York NY Awarded $200,000 from Biden-Harris Administration to Expand Services at HRSA’s Health Center Program School-Based Service Sites

HRSA's Health Center Program school-based service sites connect underserved children, adolescents, and their families to quality, affordable health care   Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) awarded over $5 million to 27 HRSA-funded health...

Our Mission

Our mission is to create access to comprehensive, high-quality primary care, including medical, mental, oral, and community health services, for all children and youth statewide through SBHCs. The Alliance achieves this by advocating for policies that promote the sustainability of SBHCs; promoting the delivery of high-quality services; raising awareness of the school-based health model; and promoting the growth and expansion of SBHCs. We have been very successful in executing our mission; today, more than 200,000 children in the state have access to school-based health services, and nearly 169,000 are enrolled in their SBHC.

Goals of a School-Based Health Center


Support the School

The SBHC is built upon mutual respect and collaboration between the school and the health provider to promote the health and educational success of school-aged children.

Implements Effective Systems

Administrative and clinical systems are designed to support effective delivery of services incorporating accountability mechanisms and performance improvement practices.

Focus on the Student

Services involve students as responsible participants in their health care, encourage the role of parents and other family members, and are accessible, confidential, culturally sensitive, and developmentally appropriate.

Delivers Comprehensive Care

An interdisciplinary team provides access to high quality comprehensive physical and mental health services emphasizing prevention and early intervention.

Support the Community

The SBHC is developed and operates based on continual assessment of local assets and needs.

Advances Health Promotion Activities

he SBHC takes advantage of its location to advance effective health promotion activities to students and community.

Provides Leadership in Adolescent and Child Health

The SBHC model provides unique opportunities to increase expertise in adolescent and child health, and to inform and influence policy and practice.