The NEW Shaping Bergen project addresses the unique fitness, health and wellness needs of the Bergen County, New Jersey special education community by piloting a fitness/wellness strategy that promotes systemic change in the environment of both Bergen County Technical High School- Paramus (Bergen Tech) and the Bergen County Special Services School District (BCSSD).
Bergen Tech – Paramus is a county-wide public vocational high school that enrolls 295 full times students and 262 part-time students. 100% of the districts full time population experience some form of learning Disability. BCSSD, one of eight New Jersey’s public, regional special services school districts, enrolls 268 K-12th grade students (41% economically disadvantaged; 57% minority) with multiple (37%) or developmental (20%) disabilities and/or moderate to high degrees of autism (43%). Students come to Bergen Tech and BCSSD from any of Bergen County’s 70+ towns.
The Shaping Bergen partnership addresses the needs of this unique school community by creating a Joint/Shared Use Agreement to support shared use of outside facilities, purchasing/installing ADA compliant outdoor fitness equipment, and creating jointly developed community service projects for students focused upon fitness, wellness and positive nutrition. These activities are supported through collaboration with Parent Partnership Organizations from both school districts, Chartwells food service and the Community Health Improvement Partnership (CHIP) of Bergen County – a coalition of over 50 health related agencies.