There is debate within the health promoting school (HPS) movement on whether schools should monitor health behaviour outcomes as part of an evaluation or rely more on process type measures, such as changes to school policies and the physical and social environment which yield information about (in) effective implementation. The debate is often framed around ideological considerations of the role of schools and there is little empirical work on how these indicators of effective implementation can influence change at a policy and practice level in real world settings. Information has potentially powerful effects in motivating a change process, but this will vary according to the type of information and the type of organizational culture into which it is presented. The current predominant model relies on process data, policy and environmental audit monitoring and benchmarking approaches, and there is little evidence of whether this engages school communities. Theoretical assertions on the importance of monitoring data to motivate change need to be empirically tested and, in doing so, we can learn which types of data influence adoption of HPS in which types of school and policy contexts.