“Don’t Weigh My Child at School” cards
Many states and school districts require schools to weigh students to measure BMI in an attempt to improve health. However, these programs have no evidence of improving student health, and many students are harmed by the practice. Sending home a “health” report card based on BMI is harmful and dangerous for children.
The good news is that parents can opt out of this practice. We’ve made it easier to support your child in not being weighed at school. You can put our cards in their backpack and remind them that they do not need to step on a scale at school.
School weight programs are a perfect example of people meaning well but doing harm. School weight programs have not been shown to have any benefit to the children who are weighed. They have not been shown to reduce weight individually or among populations. And even if they did, intentional weight loss is not associated with improved health, and may even lead to reduced health long-term.
A randomized controlled trial (the scientific gold-standard) published in 2016 found that school-based weight interventions that included weighing children, nutrition counseling, and access to an after-school exercise program were not effective in reducing BMI or improving health behaviors. Journal of School Health