Grand Island Public Schools is working to make our schools a healthier place for students to learn and staff to work!
Our School District is a member of one of the country's most extensive childhood wellness and obesity prevention programs, the Alliance for a Healthier Generation's Healthy Schools Program. More than 9,000 schools across the country are utilizing the Healthy Schools Program's free tools and resources to make significant changes in the areas of healthy eating, physical activity and staff wellness to help create a healthier generation.
There are a number of reasons why GIPS is focused on healthy choices.
- 1 in 3 Hall County school-aged children is overweight or obese. This isn't a national or state figure - it is our county. These are our kids. The Centers for Disease Control predicts 1 of 3 U.S. adults will live with diabetes by 2050. Beyond parents, no organization can make a bigger impact on reversing this trend than our schools.
- Food allergies are another issue to consider. In GIPS we have students wtih food allergies to more than 50 different items. That's a lot to keep track of when trying to decide what is safe and not safe to bring into a classroom.
- Following USDA guidelines and complying with the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 is crucial for GIPS to continue receiving much needed federal funding for Title I programs and food service grants. These allow the district to have a lunch program.
The number one reason we are focused on healthy choices is because it is the right thing to do for our students.
What does this mean for parents?
- As a parent, you can pack what you want in your child's lunch, but be aware of other student precautions. If you pack a meal for your child that includes something other classmates have allergies to, your student may be separated from the class during lunch.
- Policy has already been in place requiring all food brought into the classroom to be professionally produced and packaged. Enforcement will now become universal and unhealthy choices will not be allowed.
- As a district we want to use things other than food to celebrate. We are providing information to parents and the community on ways to make healthier choices.
Healthy choices are so important to Grand Island Public Schools, we have it in policy. In educating students, we teach hearts as well as minds.
Learn more about how you can participate in the program: http://www.healthiergeneration.org
Check out our links to see what is happening in our buildings:
- AFHG Beverage Guidelines K-12
- AFHG Competitive Foods Guidelines K-12
- Alternative to Food as Classroom Reward
- Guidelines for Healthy School Environments
- Healthy Fundraising
- Healthy Learning Environment
- Healthy School Celebration Handout
- Healthy School Snacks and Parties
For more information on wellness in Grand Island and Hall County, visit the Central District Health Department site.