Your child will be measured for height and weight as part of the yearly school health growth screening program. The height and weight measurement is then used to calculate the body mass index (BMI). BMI is a screening tool used to determine whether a child is overweight, at risk for being overweight, or underweight.

    You child’s BMI is based on the ratio of height to weight. BMI is reported as a percentile ranking based on the child’s age and gender. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) created the percentile ranges to identify children who may be at risk for specific health problems. You can log onto http://www.cdc.gov/ for more information about BMI.

    Children with high BMI are at risk for serious health conditions such as insulin resistance (precursor to diabetes) and heart disease. Like all screening tools, BMI can produce some false positives or negatives. For example a student may have an artificially high BMI due to high level of lean body tissue or muscle, as may be found in a well-conditioned athlete. That’s why it is so important to follow up with your doctor if your child’s BMI is high or low.

    Your child’s BMI is strictly confidential information and will not be discussed with anyone other than you and your child. Please share your child’s BMI information with your child’s health care provider.

    As a partner in supporting the health and well-being of your child, BAEC is working to improve nutrition and physical activity for all students.