Early Predictors of School Success (EPoSS)


Research leader:

Huijts, T

Research team: Thérèse van Amelsvoort (FHML), Philippe Delespaul (FHML), Lydia Hofmann, Timo Huijgen, Mark Levels, Polina Putrik (FHML), Lisanne Vonk

Funded by: Nationaal Regieorgaan Onderwijsonderzoek (NRO; projectnumber 40.5.21325.004)

Duration: October 2022 – January 2027

About the project

In this project, we investigate (early) predictors of and mechanisms behind educational success. More specifically, we study how lifestyle, different aspects of health and (un)healthy behaviour of primary and secondary school pupils affect their educational performance and educational career. The positive relationships between healthy behaviour, the physical, mental and social health of children and their school performance are assumed as a given in many prevention policies, but are poorly understood due to a lack of good data. We propose two ways of data improvement. First, we bring data from existing periodic national health surveys to the NCO. In addition, we collect new data at two crucial education transition moments at selected schools in primary and secondary education. We survey pupils and their parents, combining reliable and validated survey measurements with innovative ways of data collection. This provides data on (un)healthy behaviour, mental, physical and social health of pupils, as well as their social environment. This data combination enables us (and others) to investigate the influence of family, friends, and schools on health, behaviour, and educational performance. Also, this project comprises on PhD project and one postdoc project, which study (1) to what extent and why children's behaviour and health explain their performance and outcomes at key moments, and (2) to what extent and why school characteristics and children’s social environment (friends, family) contribute to the explanation of the behaviour and the physical, mental and social health of children in primary and secondary education.


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