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Indexed/Abstracted in: CINAHL, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
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Giusti P. H., De Almeida H. L. Jr., Tomasi E.
Catholic University of Pelotas, Pelotas, Brazil
Aim. There is little information about weight excess of school materials in Brazil. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and risk factors of excess weight of school materials in a private and a public school in the city of Pelotas, Brazil.
Methods. A cross-sectional study was performed to examine students’ equipment in both a private and a public school. Demographic data were collected and children were weighed and measured. The types of schoolbag, notebook, snack, and other materials taken to school were identified and weighed separately from Monday to Friday. An excess weight of school material was defined for schoolbags weighing more than 10% of each student’s weight.
Results. The study included 226 (48.8%) students from a private school and 237 (51.2%) students from a public school. From this sample, 38.2% of the total students carried an excess weight of school materials, 68.5% (155 children) of whom were private school students compared to 9.3% (22 children) of public school students, giving a prevalence ratio (PR) of 7.4 (CI95%, 4.9-11.1). After differentiating the sample in terms of school type, the association between weight excess of school material and school bag type (trolley pack), notebook type (hard back or spiral notebook) and transport of snacks were positively reported.
Conclusion. Due to the higher income of the families of private school children, the type of school equipment carried was more costly and was the heaviest. These data should be considered in educational campaigns in order to reduce school equipment weight.