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Principals' intentions and anticipated challenges in implementing nutrition education

Fozia Ahmed Baloch (Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management Sciences (BUITEMS), Quetta, Pakistan)
Shaik Abdul Malik Mohamed Ismail (School of Educational Studies, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia)
Nazir Ahmed Jogezai (Bureau of Curriculum, Education Department, Quetta, Pakistan)

Health Education

ISSN: 0965-4283

Article publication date: 17 November 2021

Issue publication date: 21 April 2022




This study aimed to know principals' intentions of implementing nutrition education (NE) and explore the challenges they may anticipate while implementing NE in their respective schools.


The study employed a sequential mixed-method design using a questionnaire and interviews to collect data. The quantitative data were collected from 378 secondary school principals, while 16 school principals were interviewed.


The study found principals with positive intentions towards implementing NE. The results also highlighted challenges related to capacity building, resources (both human and physical), policies and plans, roles, and responsibilities of the implementers (teachers and principals), support from higher authorities, community participation and teachers' unions. This study concludes that principals' intentions remain central to the implementation of NE in schools. However, it is necessary to overcome those challenges before its implementation.

Research limitations/implications

The study sought to ascertain principals' intentions rather than their actual behaviour of NE implementation and hence remains limited in this area, which future research may consider. Furthermore, the research is limited to the principals' opinions on the anticipated challenges associated with NE implementation. The study did not solicit the opinions of other stakeholders, such as education managers, policymakers, teachers and communities.


The article is significant in terms of NE being implemented in schools to improve students' physical and academic wellbeing. The critical role of principals has been investigated by determining their intentions and the anticipated challenges associated with implementing NE. The authors declare the originality of the data.



Funding acknowledgement: This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sector.

Declaration of Conflicting Interests: The authors declared no potential conflicts of interest concerning the research, authorship, and publication of this article.


Baloch, F.A., Mohamed Ismail, S.A.M. and Jogezai, N.A. (2022), "Principals' intentions and anticipated challenges in implementing nutrition education", Health Education, Vol. 122 No. 4, pp. 440-455.



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