Keeping children healthy and well is a key priority in Derbyshire. One of the ways that we can do this is to ensure young people are a healthy weight.
That's where the National Child Measurement Programme comes in.
Derbyshire County Council is required to collect data on reception year and year 6 children's height and weight from schools within their area.
Our short video below tells you more about the National Child Measurement Programme.
Deciding if a child is overweight
Defining children's weight is a complex process because children of different ages and sexes grow, and develop, at different rates.
This means that a different method is used for children than for adults.
The method used in the NCMP is that BMI is calculated by dividing a child's weight in kilograms by the square of their height in metres.
For children aged two to 18 we also take into account their age and gender.
A child's BMI is expressed as a 'centile' to show how their BMI compares with children who took part in national surveys.
For example, a girl on the 75th centile is heavier than 75 out of 100 other girls her age.
Support on offer
If the measurement programme highlights that your child is considered to be overweight then you will be offered support and advice.
We are currently developing a Healthy Families' Programme that will offer advice around balanced diets, exercise and more.
You can register your interest by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 0800 085 2299.
We will get in contact with you to discuss the support on offer.
Opting out of having my child measured
Before the programme starts each school year Derbyshire County Council will write to the parents and carers of all children eligible for measurement to tell them about the programme and that their child will be measured.
Parents or carers can choose to withdraw their child from the process by responding to the letter.
However, the NCMP aims to help children be as healthy and well as possible and so it is beneficial for your child to take part.
How we use the data collected
The data is sent to NHS Digital where it is collected and validated centrally.
NHS Digital use the data to produce National Statistics Reports showing trends at national level, differences between groups of pupils and the latest local authority level data.
The data is also shared with Public Health England .
No information is ever published by NHS Digital or PHE in a way that could lead to individual children being identified.
You can find out more about the National Child Measurement Programme.
You can check your child's BMI.
Supporting your child to be healthy
Most children in the UK maintain a healthy weight throughout childhood.
However childhood obesity is a growing issue in England with 22.4% of reception aged children and 34.3% of year 6 children now classed as overweight or very overweight.
As a parent or carer you are best placed to be able to monitor your child's progress.
It is rarely necessary for children to lose weight. Recommending weight loss for a child would only be advised by health professionals in exceptional circumstances.
However making small lifestyle changes can have a big impact on all the family. You can find help, advice and support on our supporting your child to be healthy.