The direct interactions between health status and education have been neglected in both research and policy making. This paper exploits a unique panel data set to investigate the complementarities of health with school attainment and cognitive achievement. A series of anthropometric measures for individual students in rural Northeast Brazil are employed in education performance models. The promotion motion models and value-added achievement models both demonstrate the importance of visual acuity of the student. The achievement models also highlight the role of good nutrition. While cost data are not available, a prima facie case can be made for a number of policy options.