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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Teacher Wellness in Public Schools

Just in time for back-to-school season comes a report about a new employee wellness initiative in the Noble, Oklahoma public school system.

In recent years, this district has focused on student wellness initiatives like healthier cafeteria food and more physical education classes.
But now, according to The Norman Transcript, they’re taking a different tactic: Focusing on wellness for teachers, administrators and other staffers, with the hope that they, in turn, will set a better example for kids.
Eva Dunn, child nutrition director for NPS says:

"The thing is, if we can get our adults on board, and the students see the adults are caring about their health, we're hoping we can pass it on to our students.”

The new wellness program includes a handbook with information about portion sizes, cholesterol and blood pressure, nutritional facts and tips on how to create healthy or non-food rewards for students—a major issue in schools where pizza parties and bake sales abound.

The school system will also work with a local hospital to provide yearly blood pressure checks for employees and build a new walking path at an administration building connected to a middle school.

Cool detail: They'll also mark all school hallways with distances, so employees can track how far they stroll every day, from math class to the cafeteria and back.

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