New Policy Promotes Healthy Fundraisers
The Board of Education and the Coordinated School Health Council recently approved a number of new wellness policies for Sheridan School District 2. Evaluating and updating the District's Wellness Policies are part of the initiatives under the “Communities Putting Prevention to Work” grant, which is addressing childhood obesity in schools.
Communications on each of the 22 new Board-approved wellness policies will be distributed to staff, students and parents on a regular basis over the course of the next couple of months.
The new policy drawing attention this month governs fundraisers. The policy, approved by the Sheridan School District 2 board, discourages the direct sale of food items of minimal nutritional value as part of a school (or district) fund raising effort. “Instead,” the policy states, “the District will encourage schools to hold fundraisers that are supportive of healthy eating (e.g. fresh fruits and vegetables) and physical activity.”
For instance, a physical activity fundraiser might incorporate family “fun runs,” paying students for the total steps they take in week or a month, or how many times they ride their bike for at least a half-hour.
“Colorado remains one of the leanest states in the nation, but rates of adult and childhood obesity are on the rise, so this grant will help to support optimal health in our school district and community,” said Dr. Jerry Howell, District CPPW Grant Coordinator for Sheridan School District.
“Healthy choices related to food and physical activity are associated with lower rates of obesity, cancer and heart disease. One of the most effective ways to achieve sustainable, population-wide impact on health is through well-integrated and aligned policies and initiatives that improve physical activity and healthy eating,” states Dr. Howell. “During the course of the Communities Putting Prevention to Work Grant, Sheridan has made great strides in improving student physical activity and more healthy eating choices. This is just one more step in the process to support the good work to date.”
The policy requires that at least 75 percent of fundraising activities will NOT involve the direct sale of food or beverages of minimal nutritional value. Principals are those responsible for ensuring the policy is implemented.