Monday, 19 November 2007

Students eating better and moving more

Filed under: , , , ,

Soccer snack grouch here. But this time I'm not griping about the nutritiously poor, often unnecessary soccer snacks tossed to young kids after the game. Today I'm celebrating the creative nutritional overhauls and exercise programs being implemented by many public schools across the country.

Check out these inspiring, real-life School Success Stories highlighted on the Alliance For A Healthier Generation's (AHG) website. AHG is a partnership between the American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation to fight childhood obesity. Here is a sampling of bright ideas:

  • Miami Springs Middle School renegotiated their beverage contracts to align with the beverage guidelines outlined by AHG. They serve a green vegetable with all starch entrees (salad with pizza), and that pizza crust is whole wheat, as well as the only cookies served -- whole wheat oatmeal raisin cookies. Breakfast offers low-sugar cereals and low fat milk. A before school walking club and a new focus on lunchtime free play are also sparking active kids.
  • Waubun Secondary School strategically raised the price of candy bars to $1.25 in their school store, eliminated many other unhealthy snacks and added taste-tested/student-approved yogurt, 100-calorie packs and string cheese at a significantly lower price of $.40. With these simple pricing and stock changes, sales of candy bars have gone down, healthier options have risen and here's the key -- overall store profits are up.
  • Delaware Valley Middle School started a 13-week mini-marathon. About 40 students, along with several staff, meet Tuesdays after school to nail a two-mile run. They'll finish their mini-marathon this April at their school district's first annual 5K Race/Walk.

I love that these students are eating better and moving more -- this grouch is actually smiling! Forward AHG's School Success Stories to your school principal. Educate school district leaders it is entirely possible to make strategic changes to enhance school nutrition and incorporate more exercise without jeopardizing the bottom line.

No comments: