Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Healthy Schools

On April 21, I attended the Parents as Partners session on Healthy Eating, Active Living. It was a great evening, jam-packed with information on how to create and support healthy schools with healthy kids and healthy staff.

Research shows that kids who are well-nourished, well-rested and get sufficient daily exercise learn better in school and experience fewer behavioural or mental health issues.  Getting their heart rate up and keeping an eye on sugar/salt/fat intake can go a long way to improving the long-range health outcomes of children. We've all heard about the rapidly rising rates of childhood obesity, diabetes and heart disease. It is predicted that this generation of kids could be the first who will have a shorter life expectancy than their parents. Clearly, it's time to take the health of our children seriously. EPSB has developed a policy and regulation on comprehensive school health and it is an expectation that all EPSB schools will promote and support health.

Here are a few resources from the information night. You may wish to use them to discuss how to boost the health of your school with your Principal or Parent Council.

From EPSB:

Board policy- Health and Wellness of Staff and Students

Administrative Regulation- Health and Wellness of Staff and Students http://www.epsb.ca/policy/gbe.ar.shtml

From Alberta Health Services:
"Steps to a Healthier School Environment handbook". (Each school has a copy of this)
"Alberta Health and Wellness Guidelines for Children and Youth" (each school has two copies of this).
Healthy U Campaign: http://www.healthyalberta.com/: you can order the "My Amazing Little Cookbook" (Full of kid-friendly recipes) and "Food Smart- your guide to eating well" from this website, free of charge.

From Health Canada:
"Eating well with Canada's Food Guide"  www.healthcanada.gc.ca/foodguide (available in many different languages!)

Alberta Community Wellness Fund:
visit http://www.achsc.org/ to submit an application for a grant

Ever Active Schools:
Full of info on:  healthy fundraisers (alternatives to chocolate almonds!), in-class rewards (other than candy), special days, etc.
Also: Single serving package food list- tells you which packaged foods are lower in fat/salt/sugar.

Enjoy! And be healthy.

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