12 Ky. schools recognized for efforts to improve student health

A dozen Kentucky schools that participate in the Healthy Schools Program have been recognized for creating a culture of health and wellness in their classrooms. Ja’nel Johnson reports for WKMS, Murray State University‘s radio station.

This is the first time so many Kentucky schools have made the list in the same year and they are all first-time recipients, Healthy Schools Project Manager Jacy Wooley told Johnson.

The Healthy Schools Program, part of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, presented these 12 Kentucky schools with the National Healthy Schools Award for “promoting the benefits of a healthy diet and physical activity to students and staff,” Johnson writes.

This nonprofit program is the nation’s most extensive effort to prevent childhood obesity in schools, with more than 30,000 schools participating in the program, according to its website.

Kentucky ranks eighth for childhood obesity, with 19.7 percent of its 10-to-17-year-olds obese, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Three schools in Daviess County received the award: Daviess County Middle School, Highland Elementary School and Meadow Lands Elementary School.

Matt Robbins, assistant superintendent for Daviess County Public School District, told Johnson that this program is not just about changing habits, but also about creating a different culture.

“I think it sends the message out, because that’s the direct hint, that we care enough about you that we want to talk to you about these things and how to improve your life, your family’s life and your community’s life,” he said.

Other award-winning schools in Kentucky are: Butler County Middle School; South Edmonson Elementary School; Panther Academy, Elizabethtown; Grayson County Middle School; Pride Elementary School, Hopkins County; Livingston County Middle School; Rodburn Elementary School, Rowan County; Cumberland Trace Elementary School, Warren County; and Jody Richards Elementary School, Warren County.

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