School Health Awards

The School Health Champion Awards are given annually to honor champions in the fields of health policy, school district administration, and school health providers in California, while the Red Apple Award recognizes excellent school-based health centers. Each recipient has been chosen by the California School-Based Health Alliance Board of Directors for their outstanding service and dedication to healthy, successful students.

For 2016, we honored one school-based health center and two champions for their outstanding contributions advancing school-based health care through practice, school leadership, and policy.

2016 Award Recipients

School Leader

Legislative Champion

Red Apple Award

Michelle Oppen serves as the Wellness Coordinator for the Oakland Unified School District.

The Honorable Dr. Richard Pan is the member of the California State Senate representing the 6th district.

The San Fernando Teen Health Center serves high school students in Los Angeles County.

School Leader

Michelle Oppen serves as the Wellness Coordinator for the Oakland Unified School District.

Legislative Champion

The Honorable Dr. Richard Pan is the member of the California State Senate representing the 6th district.

Red Apple Award

The San Fernando Teen Health Center serves high school students in Los Angeles County.

Michelle Oppen has served as the Wellness Coordinator for the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) since 2009. During that time, she has developed a nationally-recognized model for providing health and wellness services in school. Michelle has established a network of school-based wellness champions, who she mentors in providing wellness services tailored to the needs of their school community. She also collaborates with other OUSD departments that are critical to the health of the whole child, including school nurses, nutrition services, social and emotional learning, and others. Michelle is creating healthier schools for Oakland’s 37,000 students.

As the representative of California’s 6th Senate District, the Honorable Dr. Richard Pan is a pediatrician, former UC Davis educator, and advocate for health and education. In 2015, he authored landmark legislation to abolish non medical exemptions to legally required vaccines for public school students and improved community immunity across California. Dr. Pan has been a long-term advocate for school-based health services and has been a resource when thinking of innovative ways to fund school health services. The son of immigrants, Dr. Pan attended public schools and understands what California’s children need to be healthy and ready to learn.

The San Fernando High School Teen Health Center (SFHS THC) is the winner of the inaugural Red Apple Award for School-Based Health Center Excellence. This award lifts up the exemplary practices of a school-based health center in California that is a model for delivering health care to students that is convenient, accessible, age-appropriate, and effective. The SFHS THC was chosen because of its innovative use of social media to connect students to care and its extraordinary partnership with teachers. In just six months, the clinic tripled its Instagram followers while delivering teen-friendly health education messages and building relationships with students. The SFHS THC is truly a model of SBHC excellence.