Healthy People 2010 Schools have more influence on the lives of young people than any other social institution except the family, and provide a setting in which friendship networks develop, socialization occurs, and norms that govern behavior are developed and reinforced.
Fast forward to the Future American children are growing up to face increasing rates of obesity and chronic disease.
Why School Wellness? Health and Success in School are Interrelated! Schools cannot achieve their primary mission of education if students and staff are not healthy and fit physically, mentally and socially… The nation's leading health authorities recommend that schools take an active role in preventing disabling chronic health conditions that create misery and consume a burdensome share of the nation's resources. National Association of State Boards of Education; Fit, Healthy, and Ready to Learn, 2000
FEDERAL Regulations Require… Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act signed June 2004 USDA has required that Local Education Agencies (LEAs) participating in any federally funded Child Nutrition programs adopt a Local Wellness Policy by September 2006.
STATE Regulations Require… New Jersey Administrative Code (N.J.A.C 2:36) requires child nutrition program sponsors and other public schools with 5% or more students eligible for free or reduced price meals to: Adopt a Nutrition Policy by September 2006 Adopt N J Model School Nutrition Policy by September 2007.
By September 2006, Local LEAs were required to… Develop one Local Policy to meet BOTH Federal and State Requirements: Option 1: –Adopt N J Model School Nutrition Policy, meeting minimum requirement of federal Local Wellness Policy…. OR
Option 2: Develop own policy that –Meets federal wellness policy guidelines: 1) Goals for nutrition education and physical activity 2) Nutrition standards for food/beverages available in school 3) School based activities that promote student wellness - Meets state requirements for 2006: 1) Address the dining environment 2) Adequate time for meal service and consumption 3) Coordination of lunch and recess or physical education schedules.
By September 2007, Local LEAs must… Implement policy consistent with N J Model School Nutrition Policy. If district chose Option 1 in 2006: –Minimum requirements have been met –Continue to enhance If district chose Option 2 in 2006: –Adopt NJ Policy in its entirety –Continue to enhance
Additional Requirements Involve a team to develop, maintain, and evaluate the policy: –Parents –Students –Food service representative –School board –School administrator, teacher, nurse –Community member
Additional Requirements Designation of person/s responsible for ensuring implementation of the policy Evaluate the policy Available tools: Wellness Policy Evaluation Tool (NJ Dept. of Agric.) Changing the Scene Improvement Checklist (USDA; Team Nutrition) School Health Index (Center for Disease Control; CDC)
Components of a Wellness Policy Goals for Nutrition Education Goals for Physical Activity Nutrition standards for foods and beverages available at school Other school-based activities that promote student wellness
Notification and Training for Local Districts April 2005 - Federal wellness policy requirement announced at Reauthorization Workshops Sept 2005 – Memo notifying districts of both federal and state requirements March 2006 – 16 workshops throughout the state on development of policies June 2006 – Reminder memo to districts of the requirements Spring 2007 – Regional workshops planned on policy implementation
Implemention of the Wellness Policy Requires good planning and management skills Consistent oversight Requires widespread buy-in by school staff and local community
Questions and Solutions School PartiesSchool Parties FundraisingFundraising Classroom RewardsClassroom Rewards Food for Meetings & ActivitiesFood for Meetings & Activities
School Parties Celebrate with healthy snacks: –Fresh fruits and vegetables –Animal crackers –Baked chips –100% fruit juices –Pudding –Soft pretzels
Classroom Rewards Alternatives to food as a reward: –Extra art time –Time to play a computer game –No-homework pass –Earn play money for privileges –Extra recess time (also promotes physical activity!) –Listen to music while working
Food for Meetings Fresh fruits and vegetables Yogurt Mini bagels, with low fat cream cheese Granola Bars Soft Pretzels 100% juices, bottled water Trail mix
NJ Schools at a Glance… All districts participating in any Federal Child Nutrition Program have submitted copies of their policies to Dept. of Agriculture Districts have provided person/s responsible for policy implementation
NJ Schools at a Glance… For the 2006-2007 school year: – 326 (57%) districts have adopted the NJ Model School Nutrition Policy – 247 (43%) districts have developed their own local wellness policy
Compliance Monitoring Jurisdiction falls under the Department of Agriculture: –Certification of policy adoption signed by authorized representative of the district –Copy of board approved policy collected by the DOA –On site monitoring as part of school meal programs regular review process, every 4-5 years
Non-Compliant Schools School districts will not be permitted to participate and receive funding for the school meal programs at the start of the new school year. Mid-year, reimbursement will be withheld if schools are found not to be in compliance with their wellness/nutrition policy
Related Issues Food Allergies Biosecurity School Breakfast Programs Scheduling/time to eat Open campus
Can Schools Improve Nutrition Standards AND Maintain Revenues?
Studies have shown that changing over to healthy options corresponds to increased meal participation levels, outweighing any slight revenue reduction in a la carte sales. Students will buy and consume healthful foods and beveragesand schools can make money from selling healthful options. YES!
Implement Evaluate Improve Keep the cycle going…