In just six short months, Action for Fitness in Monmouth County has worked with our committed partners to start two School Health Councils in the Asbury Park elementary schools. Together with our key partners, the Asbury Park School District, the YMCA and Meridian Healthcare, we are developing strategies and methods to teach students the importance of eating healthier foods and moving more everyday, we are creating effective policy and environmental change in the Bradley and Thurgood Marshall schools, and we are seeking to motivate and empower the school staff to be effective role models who make a difference in the lives of their students and the community of Asbury Park.
- Submitted a Party Policy change that has been approved by both SHCs and needs final approval by the District Board of Education. The policy requires all school parties to adhere to the District nutrition guidelines which follow NJDOH guidelines. Additionally, a template for parties that promotes small bite-size portions and more fresh fruits and vegetables and the elimination of foods that have sugar as primary ingredient.
- Surveyed more than 1,000 PK-4th grade students at both schools to find out what they know about nutrition & physical activity
- Evaluated current district Physical Activity policies and suggested changes that will support our mission
- Fostered an environment that lets the students know that physical activity is important for them to live long and healthy lives by starting/promoting:
- rollerskating classes (more than 500 students skated in P.E.)
- Moving and Grooving with Hopscotch program for K-2 students at one school
- pilot walking programs at both schools
- a Family Fitness Activity for students, staff and families to do fun cardio exercises together afterschool
- a visual media/TV system that provides fitness reminders and eating tips daily to staff and students in a central school location
- monthly articles in newsletter re nutrition and physical activity
- Promoted and utilized evidence-based initiatives and educational programs to teach kids about the importance of good nutrition, 60 minutes of daily physical activity, and eating fresh fruits and vegetables such as
- the Fresh Fruit and Vegetables grant,
- Kid Power and Operation Lunchline 3D Musical
- creating an edible raised bed vegetable garden at one school
- donating a peach tree/strawberry plants to the PK and K classes at both schools to teach the kids how to grow healthy food and let them taste the fruits of their labor
- encouraged Sodexo Food Services to look at the Smart Lunchroom program and asked them to highlight fruits and veggies for kids to taste
For more info, contact Lisa Lee, School Health Council Program Coordinator at 732-431-7456 or Lisa.Lee@co.monmouth.nj.us.