School Health Councils and Wellness Policies Christine Philley, M.Ed., CFCS School Health Administrator Office of Healthy Schools
Mississippi Healthy Students Act - 2007 Was passed into law because: Childhood obesity is a big problem in Mississippi A focus needed to be placed on health, physical education/physical activity, quality nutrition and on school wide initiatives and programs to promote the health and wellness of students and staff members in our MS schools
Healthy Students Act (House Bill 732/Senate Bill 2369) – Section 37-13-134 Mississippi Code of 1972 - Accountability Standard 17.5.1 Mandates 150 minutes per week of physical education/physical activity for grades K-8 Mandates 45 minutes per week of health education for grades K-8 Requires ½ Carnegie Unit of physical education for graduation in grades 9-12 Appropriates funds for a physical education coordinator to be housed at MDE
Requires the State Board of Education to establish regulations for child nutrition school breakfast and lunch programs to include how food items are prepared, time allotted for the consumption of breakfast and lunch, extra food sales, marketing and retail fast foods. Defines the duties of School Health Councils to include a coordinated approach to school health.
What is a School Health Council? The School Health Council (SHC) is an advisory group composed of committed individuals from both the school and the community. The group works together to provide guidance and leadership to the school on all aspects of the school health program.
Potential SHC Members Parents Teachers (Physical Education & Health Education Teachers are required to serve) Students School staff to include Counselors, Nurses and Food Service Managers Health care providers (MD, PA, RN, NP, DDS, RD) Business/industry representatives Community leaders Government officials Extension staff Social service agencies Attorneys and law enforcement officials Clergy College/university personnel Media
The School Health Council should have a a School Health Coordinator. That person: Should be vitally interested in student health and wellness Will use available resources to assist in the organization of the school health council Will be responsible for coordinating wellness initiatives in the school and assisting the health council with the development and implementation of a local wellness policy as required by Accountability Standard 17.5.1 Will work with the School Health Council to complete a needs assessment to identify health program needs in the school Will communicate with faculty members and council members about health issues and initiatives
Steps in Organizing a School Health Council Step 1. Get Together and Establish Structure a) Meet informally with interested individuals b) Select Coordinator c) Gain support of school leaders d) Recruit members/share guidelines
A School Health Council will Follow Guidelines: Meet a minimum of three times per school year Maintain accurate minutes of meetings to document the recommendations and topics of each meeting See that one annual presentation is made to the local school board (approve any revisions to the local school wellness policy, identify successes or make recommendations for policy development)
Steps in Organizing a School Health Council (continued) Step 2. Assess School Needs & Create a Vision a) Use the School Health Index to assess school health needs b) Involve all council members in the assessment process c) Use the results of the assessment
The School Health Council will use the School Health Index tool: http://apps.need.cdc.gov/shi/
Steps in Organizing a School Health Council (continued) Step 3: Develop a Plan a) Use results of needs assessment to build an implementation plan and the Local Wellness Policy b) Council should develop a plan of action based on school needs.
A School Health Council will Develop a Quality Wellness Policy The MS Public School Accountability Standards (Standard 17.5.1) and the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 (PL#108-265), requires each local school to establish a local school health council and to have a local school wellness policy. MS Code of 1972, Annotated Section 37-13-134 requires that all components of Coordinated School Health be addressed in the Wellness Policy.
Resource - Local Wellness Policy Development Guide (revised June 2014) Your step-by-step guide to preparing your local school wellness policy No need to “reinvent the wheel” All the resources that are needed are there for your health council to use. 2014 Version Found under What’s New on the Office of Healthy School website.
Interpreting and Using the Wellness Policy Guide Pages 1-3 define the laws that require local wellness policies, and outline the three steps to building an effective wellness policy. Pages 4-15 address the wellness policy components and the minimum requirements to be included in the policy.
Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Health and Learning Model:
Steps in Organizing a School Health Council (continued) Step 4. Take Action – Implement the Plan a) Set Priorities – work on the greater needs first b) Take “baby steps” - don’t overwhelm your council in the beginning c) Make sure that all council members are involved
Steps in Organizing a School Health Council (continued) Step 5: Evaluation, Celebration, and Sustainability a) Evaluation is a constant process b) Always remember to recognize council members for their work c) Celebrate successes along the way!
School Health Council Resources www.mde.k12.ms.us (Click on Office of Healthy Schools, then on Resources)
“New” USDA Wellness Resources Can be found at: http://healthymeals.nal.usda.gov/school- wellness-resources
Health Council Resources www.mde.k12.ms.us Click on Healthy Schools/Resources Mississippi Department of Education Office of Healthy Schools P.O. Box 771 Jackson, MS 39205
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