NC Healthy Schools

Healthy Children Learn Better!

Children sitting on a ball field.NC Healthy Schools focuses on improving the health of students and staff by providing coordination and resources within the context of the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model. The goal is to create students who are healthier, in school, in class, and ready to learn. Students who are healthier are more alert, more focused on learning, and miss less school. They not only learn better in every class, but they also learn lifelong healthy behaviors. It just makes sense.


NC students, staff, and families are healthy, safe, supported, engaged, and prepared for future success.


Provide support to schools and community stakeholders so they can promote the health, well-being, and success of NC students and staff.

How We Do It

We use the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) framework, and related best practices, to guide our partnerships, priorities, products, and recommendations.

School-Based Mental Health Policy

In June of 2020, Session Law 2020-7 was approved by the North Carolina General Assembly. It is an act to require the state board of education to adopt a school-based mental health policy and to require k-12 school units to adopt and to implement a school-based mental health plan that includes a mental health training program and a suicide risk referral protocol.

School-Based Mental Health Policy Compliance


The NC Healthy Schools Team

Ellen Essick, Ph.D.
Section Chief for NC Healthy Schools

Kisha Bryant, Ed.D

School Counseling Consultant



Megan Cardin

School Psychology Consultant


Bernadette Cole
Administrative Specialist for NC Healthy Schools


Burt Jenkins
Healthful Living / Athletics


Pachovia Lovett
School Social Work Consultant


Lillian Pinto
Reproductive Health Consultant


Susanne Schmal
School Health Partnerships and Policy Consultant


Jenifer Simone
School Nurse Consultant


Les Spell
Data and Policy Consultant



Information and Resources

For more information about the work of the Healthy Schools Team and to browse resources, visit our subpages below or on the side-rail:


Guidance Standards

Healthful Living

School Counseling

School Health Nurse

School Mental Health Policy

School Social Work

NC Healthy Schools Data


Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child