Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

California Healthy Kids Survey - CalEdFacts

This content is part of California Department of Education's information and media guide about education in the State of California. For similar information on other topics, visit the full CalEdFacts.

The California Healthy Kids Survey (CHKS) is an anonymous, voluntary survey of student risky behaviors, resiliency, and school climate. It is administered to students in grades five, seven, nine, and eleven. It provides schools and communities, as well as the state, with key data on barriers and supports associated with academic performance, positive youth development and well-being. The CHKS fulfills the data collection mandate of the state Tobacco Use Prevention and Education Program, and provides data on statewide initiatives and programs such as the California Department of Education’s (CDE) Closing the Achievement Gap Initiative, Service Learning, and Migrant Education Programs.

At the heart of the CHKS is a research-based core module that provides valid indicators of students’ drug and alcohol use, school violence, resiliency, and youth development.

In addition, there are supplementary modules to choose from at the secondary school level that ask detailed questions on specific topics. These include questions on school racial and cultural climate, more in-depth questions on resiliency and protective factors; tobacco use, drug use and violence, physical health, sexual behavior, and after school activities. Districts can also customize their questions in a module targeting topics of local interest.

In addition to a companion staff survey (California School Climate Survey), the CDE expanded the CHKS in 2010 by creating a companion parent version (California School Parent Survey) and packaging the three surveys into a California School Climate, Health, and Learning Survey (Cal-SCHLS) System. The Cal-SCHLS was recently highlighted by the Obama Administration as a model for the nation in its blueprint for reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. In California, about 900 districts, 7,000 schools, and one million students have participated in the Cal-SCHLS every two years.

For more information on the CHKS, please contact Hilva Chan, Education Programs Consultant, Coordinated School Health and Safety Office, by e-mail at
Questions: Hilva Chan | | 916-319-0194 
Last Reviewed: Thursday, April 27, 2017