Fit for Test Scores–Unfit for a Healthy Life: A Call to Action
We live in a test-obsessed society. Tragically, our well-intentioned quest for leaving no child behind academically is risking the very lives of increasing numbers of children. During this era of test-obsession, for example, the rate of childhood obesity has tripled. Likewise, our children are inundated by the increasing proliferation of cell phones, computer games, and other technological devices. Yet, little attention is given to protecting children from the potential risks associated with such devices. Further, as children become more engrossed in technological realities of the 21st century, they are becoming more disengaged from nature itself–a condition that Louv (2005) terms “nature deficit disorder.” Other neglected health-related areas include health risks resulting from chemicals, poverty, allergies, asthma, AIDS, medications, and poor nutrition, to name only a few. Perhaps most important, little attention is being given to the mental health of children in an age when suicide is rapidly becoming one of the leading causes of death among adolescents. This theme issue of Childhood Education was commissioned by ACEI’s Publications Committee to focus professional attention on a wide range of emerging health-related issues. The hope is that such discourse will result in collaborative actions to mitigate this growing problem.