Master's Culminating Experience
The purpose of this research was to describe self-reported physical health status, behaviors, and wellbeing interests of teachers and other staff within a Head Start agency. Information on overall health, behaviors, demographics, and interests in wellbeing programs was collected through a 58-item questionnaire (N = 312). A majority of participants were white (66.8%), female (93.7%), and half were teachers (49.4%). Bivariate analyses and an ordinal logistic regression were performed to test the association of physical health with independent variables, health behaviors, and demographics. Associations with “very good/excellent” physical health displayed by the regression model include mental health, chronic conditions, vegetable consumption, being physically active for 30 minutes per day, and the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages. The odds of reporting “very good/excellent” physical health was 2.61 times higher for respondents with no chronic diseases vs. those with two or more. Those with “poor/fair” mental health had 91% lower odds of “very good/excellent” physical health when compared to those with “very good/excellent” mental health. The majority of employees (95.9%) reported that they were at least “somewhat interested” in worksite wellbeing programs to help them reach their health goals. The high interest of participants paired with their reported health status and behaviors, creates an opportunity to target employee wellbeing. Wellbeing programs that improve the health of employees and the early childhood education environment can ultimately impact the outcomes of the children and families they serve.
Snyder, K., & Hill, M. (2018). Wellbeing Begins with Employees: Exploring Associations of Physical Health in a Head Start Organization.Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio.
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