The school has long been recognised as an important setting for health promotion. Healthy schools work gained momentum particularly in the last third of the twentieth century, growing both in terms of activity and government commitment, but in the absence of agreed standards of quality and consistency across the country. This spurred the development of the Government’s Healthy Schools Programme, launched in 1998, to promote healthy schools work and to develop a national framework of quality standards and a programme of support. This paper describes the development of the National Healthy School Standard, launched in October 1999, focusing on the consultation which fed into its structure and content. The learning from this undertaking might be of value to similar consultations at a national or local level.
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