Association‌ of‌ State‌ &‌ Territorial‌ Dental‌ Directors
3858‌ Cashill Blvd.,‌ Reno,‌ NV‌ ‌89509
Phone‌ 775-626-5008‌‌

School and Adolescent Oral Health Committee

ASTDD's School and Adolescent Oral Health (SAOH) Committee's mission is to promote the importance of good oral health practices that improve the oral health of school-age children and adolescents through education, networking, and collaborative partnerships at local, state and national levels. The committee serves as a resource to state oral health programs and others and works to ensure a strong oral health component in all school and adolescent health initiatives.

Committee Members

SAOH Committee Logic Model

SAOH Committee Work Plan

School and Adolescent Oral Health Programs

SAOH's programs promote, protect, and assure the oral health and well-being of school-aged children and adolescents. Through these programs, children and adolescents are encouraged to accept self-responsibility for their oral health, develop life-long healthy behaviors, and receive education, preventive care, treatment and other services.

School and adolescent oral health programs strive to: 

(1) Assess the oral health needs of school-age children and adolescents;

(2) Develop policies to improve the oral health of children and adolescents and their famlies;

(3) Assure that children and adolescents are getting needed prevention and treatment services.

1. ASTDD White Papers

2. ASTDD Best Practice Approach Reports

ASTDD supports the integration of oral health into the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model and has prepared the following resources:

3. Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Oral Health Toolkit

This toolkit contains resources to assist in integrating oral health into the WSCC model. The toolkit is useful for oral health programs, school nurses and other health professionals, teachers and school administrators, community health workers, parents and others who are interested in promoting oral health in the school-setting following a model that addresses the whole child and whose goal is to improve learning and health among school-age children. We value your input and appreciate your feedback on the WSCC Toolkit. Please send comments to

4. Other WSCC Resources

Submit a short 2-page summary of your successful school-based program that uses the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child model to be posted and shared online. Submission Form

5. Webinars

  • School and Adolescent Oral Health Committee Webinar: The ABCs of Oral Health for the National Association of School Nurses. (October 2014)
  • Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child = Better Oral Health Webinar
    This webinar hosted by Smiles Across America reviews the components of ASTDD's e-toolkit and provides recommendations for incorporating dental health into the CDC's Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) school health model. (September 2015)
  • Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child = Better Oral Health
    Members of the ASTDD School and Adolescent Oral Health Committee presented this Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child = Better Oral Health webcast. Schools play a critical role in promoting the health and safety of children between 5 and 17 years of age, helping them to establish lifelong behaviors that promote health and wellness. Schools may also play a role in promoting the integration of oral health with general health and well-being. Research demonstrates a link between general health and dental health outcomes and academic success. For more than 10 years, ASTDD's School and Adolescent Oral Health Committee has promoted the integration of oral health into a comprehensive model of school health. This webinar targeting dental directors, sealant program coordinators and stakeholders, reviewed the components of an e-toolkit and provided recommendations for incorporating dental health into the CDC's Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) school health model. In addition to the recording, the PowerPoint slides are available for individuals who were not able to participate in the webcast. (February 2016)

6. School Oral Health Program Resources

  • Survey of School-Based Oral Health Programs Operated by Health Centers - This report from the National Network for Oral Health Access, presents the results of a national online survey of Health Centers that National Network for Oral Health Access (NNOHA) conducted in June 2013 to obtain information about school-based oral health programs located in school-based health centers (SBHCs) and operated by Health Centers. Survey respondents were dental directors from Health Centers that currently have school-based oral health programs. Sixty-two Health Centers from 29 states that provided school-based oral health programs completed the survey. The paper also presents results from two follow-up focus groups held in August 2013 with dental directors or school-based program managers from 10 Health Centers with large school-based oral health programs. (July 2014)
  • The Utah Department of Health Oral Health Program (OHP) launched an Adolescent Oral Health Campaign to educate middle school and high school age students about oral health care with the goal of increasing positive oral health behaviors and increasing the participation and utilization of dental services. (2016-17)
  • Oregon's Oral Health Toolkit for School Based Health Centers (SBHCs) This toolkit provides Oregon SBHCs with various kinds of resources aimed at: connecting clients with existing oral health services in their area, integrating oral health services into their SBHCs and schools as well as different types of publications around childhood/young adulthood oral health and oral health services in school settings.It was developed by the Oregon Oral Health Coalition's K-12 Committee, which is committed to increasing in-school access to oral health services, advance education outcomes, increase school attendance and improve the overall health and wellness for Oregon's K-12 population.
  • The National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center (OHRC) responds to the needs of professionals working in states and communities, with the goal of improving oral health services for pregnant women, infants, children, and adolescents, including those with special health care needs, and their families (the maternal and child health (MCH) population). OHRC serves the MCH population by supporting health professionals, program administrators, educators, and others working in or with MCH programs.

•    Be an Oral Health Champion: How School-Based Clinic Staff Can Help Students Achieve Good Oral Health

•    Dental Sealants: A Resource Guide

•    Child and Adolescent Oral Health Issues

•    Comprehensive Oral Health Services for Improving Children's and Adolescents' Oral Health Through School-Based Health Centers

•    Integrating Sustainable Oral Health Services into Primary Care in School-Based Health Centers: A Framework

•    Oral Health and Learning: When Children's Oral Health Suffers, So Does Their Ability to Learn

•    Pain and Suffering Shouldn't Be an Option: School-Based and School Linked Oral Health Services for Children and Adolescents

•    Preventing Tooth Decay and Saving Teeth with Dental Sealants

•    Promoting Oral Health in Schools: A Resource Guide

•    Seal America: The Prevention Invention

•    School Oral Health Services

  • School Oral Health Resource Library. This library from the School-based Health Alliance serves as an access point to resources from reputable oral health organizations and programs. The platform simplifies and streamlines the search and identification of relevant resources for all who are engaged in school oral health at the national, state, and local levels. (January 2018)

7. Websites