A Healthy Blog

Massachusetts health care — wonky, with a healthy dose of reality

Education Alone Is Not Enough

Education Alone Is Not Enough

January 26, 2009

“These are not bad people or lazy people suffering in this economy – All people are suffering” - Dr. Deborah Frank, Children’s Sentinel Nutrition Assessment Program (C-SNAP) Education had long been touted as the silver bullet to solve issues of poverty and inequality. But education alone is not enough – if basic needs are not addressed, the best school in the world won’t be enough. A child can’t learn if they are sick. A child can’t learn if they are homeless. A child can’t learn if they are hungry. At the start of the 2009-2010 legislative session, healthcare, housing, and hunger prevention advocates collaborated on a legislative briefing that connected all three issue areas to form a basis for childhood success. Hosted by HCFA’s Amy Whitcomb Slemmer, the forum featured remarks from Diane Sullivan of Homes for Families, Helen Caulton-Harris of the Springfield Department of Health and Human Services, Ellen Parker of Project Bread, and Dr. Deborah Frank of C-SNAP. Especially in the current economic climate, it is vitally important for advocates to work together on shared goals and missions. Health care, housing, and hunger prevention do not exist independently of each other – rather, we have to take a holistic view of children. This morning’s briefing marks the beginning of new collaborative work between HCFA and many new partners. To paraphrase what has become a popular political slogan: Together, we can help all children achieve success in school and in life. Matt Noyes