Improving Health and Academic Outcomes by Integrating Oral Health into School Curriculum




Session Description

The Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors (ASTDD) recommends the integration of oral health education in the school curriculum as a best practice to reduce oral disease. Oral health education increases knowledge, skills, positive attitudes to make assertive decisions and perform healthy behaviors. School-based health programs (SBHP) emphasize the need of engaging students as active participants in their learning and health and must involve parents, teachers, families, and communities. SBHP target long term outcomes. Better oral health outcomes will enhance overall health, academic outcomes, and quality of life, closing oral health gaps and reducing oral health disparities in NM.

Learning Objectives

     #1 Describe the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model (WSCC).
     #2 Identify three strategies to integrate oral health into existing school health programs.
     #3 Define three strategies to incorporate oral health in science class curriculum.
     #4 Identify three strategies to engage communities to support oral health programs at school settings.

About the Presenter

Presenter, Sonia Garcia-Lopez's headshotSonia C Garcia Lopez, Community Social Services Coordinator/Dental Case Manager, NM Department of Health, Office of Oral Health
Sonia Garcia Lopez is a dentist from the National University of Colombia. Sonia holds a specialization in maxillary orthopedic from the Antonio Nariño University and a specialization in hospital management from the Pontificia Xaveriana University. She worked for 26 years as a practitioner dentist in Bogota, Colombia. Sonia holds a master of science in health education with emphasis in community health from the University of New Mexico. Currently, Sonia works at the New Mexico Department of Health, Office of Oral Health, in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a Community Social Services Coordinator, Dental Case Manager.

Continuing Education

This presentation has been approved for the following continuing education units:

Approving BoardProfessionsCEUs Offered
NASW-NWCounselors & Social Worker1
CHWCommunity Health Workers1
NMBCCHPBehavioral Health Providers1

To receive credit, you must attend the session in its entirety and complete the session evaluation within 48 hours of the session conclusion.  As per board requirements, attendance will be taken at the beginning and end of the session.

Brought to you by:

NM Department of Health, Office of Oral Health

The Office of Oral Health exists to improve the oral health of those in our communities through prevention and education.



Jun 11 2020


10:00 am - 11:30 am




(505) 266-3451