The Network of French teacher education colleges for health education and health promotion


According to the IUHPE Guidelines the essential elements of health promoting schools are healthy school policies, school’s physical environment, school’s social environment, individual health skills and action competencies, community links, and health services. However, in most countries, schools give low priority to health promotion and school staffs, (mainly teachers), have little awareness of their role in health promotion. Studies show that teachers who have received health promotion training tend to be involved more frequently in health promotion projects and have a more comprehensive approach to health education.
Staff training is then also a main challenge for the future of health promotion. In a health promotion perspective, giving teachers the means to develop, in their own school context, a health promotion approach adapted to the needs of their students is a main objective.
This is the reason why, the French Network of University teacher-education Institutes in Health Education and Prevention took the initiative to join international forces to strengthen and advocate for teacher education in health promotion.

Plaquette UNIRéS_EnglishAims and objectives
Since its creation, the Network has developed a plan of action centered on 5 main objectives :

  • Develop Cooperation in HE among teacher education colleges
  • Develop teacher training in HE
    – Develop an annual program of UNIRéS training courses in HE for teacher educators and other educational executives (school directors, nurses, doctors, education managers…)
    – Provide support and assistance to teacher education colleges for the development of training sessions for teacher educators or the inclusion of HE curricula in teacher education degree programs
    – Develop or participate in training and communication actions in health education and promotion adapted to the specific expectations of a wide variety of publics (inside and outside of schools)
    – Provide online e-learning courses in HE for masters level students and for the continuing education of educational staff, made available to all degree programs of all French teacher education colleges, and to selected centers for professional training in education.
  • Create tools for teaching HE
  • Disseminate and participate in research on HE
    – Stimulate teacher awareness and access to research results in HE
    – Conduct Network research initiatives and participate in research on HE in schools
    – Assist and tutor masters and PhD students doing research in HE
  • Communicate on HE in and outside schools
      – Communicate regularly about developments in HE
    – Organize events and colloquia on HE research and practices
    – Publish and provide support to publications on HE

About UNIRéS
The underlying purpose of the Network is to promote transversal interdisciplinary approaches to health education centered on developing awareness, relational capacities, sense of responsibility, and ability to make enlightened choices with regards to social and health related issues.
The Network is an association (i.e. a non-profit, non-governmental organization of general interest) created in 2005 to federate researchers and teacher educators in health education (HE) throughout the 32 public teacher training colleges in France.
The Network draws its origins from pioneer HE projects in different regions of France dating back to the 1990s, notably in connection with research on health education” research center (ACTE EA 4281) based in Clermont-Ferrand, France.
Following efforts to federate HE initiatives among ESPE “Teacher education colleges” throughout France, the Network was founded in 2005 to create an independent national organization dedicated to developing health education through training for teacher educators.


Since 2006 the Network organizes bi-annual colloquia on research and practices in health education with its partners, and publishes the proceedings.
The 6th edition will take place in Paris In October 2016.
The goals of Network colloquia are to stimulate research in health education, and to facilitate the dissemination of research results to teacher educators, teachers, and other education or health professionals.

Education, Health and Societies : An International Peer Reviewed Journal
Revue Education Santé Sociétés
Education, Health and Societies is a new French-speaking, international peer reviewed journal. Created by Unirés in an interdisciplinary perspective including the diversity of fields concerned with Educational and Health in today’s changing Societies,  it has been designed to provide publishing space for scientific production focusing on the complex links and issues in play in Education and Health in a social and historical perspective. Integration of diversity and plurality is intended to initiate open and trans disciplinary debate about critical issues.

Editorial Office :
Dominique Berger, Professor at university of Lyon (France)
Maryvette Balcou, Lecturer at university of Réunion (France)

Plateforme UNIRéSThe online learning platform
UNIRéS’s online learning platform in health education was created in 2010 to share educational content among members of the Network and to promote the dissemination of health education research.

Member organizations provide regular financial and material support to Network activities and actively participate in Network management as members of the Pilot Committee :

Institut National de Prévention et d’Education pour la Santé
(The French Institute for Health Promotion and Health Education)


Mutuelle Générale de l’Education Nationale
(General Mutual insurance of National Education)


Mission Interministérielle de Lutte contre les drogues et les conduites addictives (The Inter-departmental Mission for the fight against drugs and drug addiction)


Other partnerships
Since its creation the Network has developed a great number of collaborations with a variety of organizations in education and health ranging from individual schools and local associations to regional and national administrations.
The network has also developed international relations through ties with foreign universities and had been an IUHPE member since 2007.

Contacts :

University Claude BERNARD- Lyon1- ESPE
90 rue de la Richelandière
42000 Saint Etienne (France)
Mail :
Phone : 00 (33) 477 492 986