5661

Adoption Date: 7/5/2006; Revised: 11/17/2020

5000 - NON-INSTRUCTIONAL/BUSINESS OPERATIONS

NON-INSTRUCTIONAL OPERATIONS

5661 WELLNESS POLICY

The District is committed to providing a school environment that promotes and protects students' health, well-being, and ability to learn, by fostering healthy eating and physical activity before, during, and after the school day.

Governance

District Wellness Committee

The District has established a wellness committee that meets at least four times per year to oversee and establish goals for school health and safety policies and programs, including the development, implementation, and periodic review and update of this district-level wellness policy. The District Wellness Committee will evaluate and make recommendations that reflect the specific needs of the District and its students.

The District will actively seek members for the District Wellness Committee that will represent all school levels, and include (to the extent possible), but not be limited to, representatives from the following groups:

  1. Parents and caregivers;
  2. Students;
  3. Physical Education teachers;
  4. School health professionals;
  5. District food service program representatives;
  6.    School Board
  7. School administrators;
  8. General Education teachers; and
  9.    Community Members.

The Superintendent will designate a District Wellness Coordinator to convene the District Wellness Committee in order to facilitate the development of, and any proposed updates to, the District’s wellness policy, and will also ensure the District’s compliance with this policy.

Nutrition

The District seeks to ensure all students obtain the knowledge and skills necessary to make nutritious food selections and enjoy life-long physical activity. To this end, the District sets forth the following goals relating to nutrition.

School Meals

The District is committed to promoting student health and reducing childhood obesity by:

a)      Serving meals that meet or exceed nutrition requirements established by local, state, and Federal statutes and regulations;

b)      Ensuring all students have a scheduled lunch period;

c)      Providing all students with adequate time to consume meals;

d)      Promoting healthy food and beverage choices;

e)      Preparing meals that are appealing and attractive to students;

f)      Serving meals in clean and pleasant settings;

g)      Having a recess period in grades K-8 to better support learning and healthy eating; and

h)      Encouraging student participation in federal Child Nutrition Programs.

Child Nutrition Programs aim to improve the diet and health of school children, help mitigate childhood obesity, model healthy eating to support the development of lifelong healthy eating patterns and support healthy choices while accommodating cultural food preferences and special dietary needs.

All schools within the District participate in the following federal Child Nutrition Programs:

  • National School Lunch Program;
  • School Breakfast Program;

The District may operate additional nutrition-related programs and activities, including:

  • Food Link


Water

To promote hydration, free, safe, unflavored drinking water will be available to all students and staff throughout the school day and throughout every school campus. The District will make drinking water available where school meals are served during mealtimes.

Competitive Foods and Beverages

All competitive foods will meet, at a minimum, the USDA Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards. The Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards aim to improve student health and well-being, increase consumption of healthful foods during the school day and create an environment that reinforces the development of healthy eating habits.

Competitive foods include all food and beverages available for sale to students on the school campus during the school day other than meals reimbursed through programs authorized by the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act and the Child Nutrition Act of 1966. This includes, but is not limited to, a la carte options in cafeterias, vending machines, school stores, and snack or food carts.

Fundraising

All foods and beverages available for sale to students through fundraisers on the school campus during the school day will meet, at a minimum, the USDA Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards.

School sponsored fundraisers conducted outside of the school day will be encouraged to support the goals of this policy by promoting the sale of healthy food items (fresh fruit and produce) and/or nonfood items. All school sponsored fundraisers must be approved by the appropriate building principal or designee prior to being conducted.

Foods and Beverages Available for Sale at Events Outside of the School Day

The District is committed to ensuring that all foods and beverages available to students support healthy eating. Efforts will be made to ensure that the foods and beverages that are available for sale at school sponsored events outside of the school day will meet or exceed the USDA Smart Snack in School nutrition standards.

Food and Beverages Marketing in Schools

All foods and beverages marketed or promoted to students on the school campus during the school day will meet, at a minimum, the USDA Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards. Food marketing commonly includes oral, written, or graphic statements made for the purpose of promoting the sale of a food or beverage product.

Nutrition Promotion and Education

Nutrition promotion and education positively influences lifelong eating behaviors. The District will model and encourage healthy eating by:

a)      Promoting healthy food and beverage choices for all students by using Smarter Lunchroom techniques which guide students toward healthful choices, as well as by ensuring that 100% of foods and beverages promoted to students meet the USDA Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards;

b)      Promoting nutrition education activities that involve parents, students, and the community;

c)      Promoting school and community awareness of this wellness policy through various means, such as publication on the District website;

d)      Encouraging and promoting wellness through social media, newsletters, and an annual family wellness event;

e)      Encouraging participation in federal Child Nutrition Programs;

f)      Integrating nutrition education within the comprehensive health education curriculum and other instructional areas, as appropriate, and taught at every grade level, K through 12. Nutrition education follows applicable New York State Standards and is designed to help students acquire:

1.      Nutrition knowledge, including, but not limited to: the benefits of healthy eating; essential nutrients; nutritional deficiencies; principles of healthy weight management; the use and misuse of dietary supplements; and safe food storage, handling, and preparation;

2.      Nutrition-related skills, including, but not limited to: planning healthy meals; understanding and using food labels; critically evaluating nutrition information, misinformation, and commercial food advertising; assessing personal eating habits; and setting and achieving goals related to these concepts;

g)      Providing families and teachers with a list of healthy party ideas, including non-food celebration ideas;

h)       Providing families with a list of classroom snacks and beverages that meet USDA Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards;

i)      Encouraging District staff to model healthy eating, drinking, and physical activity behaviors for students.

Physical Activity and Education

Physical Activity

Since physical activity affects students' emotional and physical well-being, as well as their cognitive development, the District is committed to ensuring that all students, including students with disabilities requiring adaptations or modifications, are provided the opportunity to participate in physical activity before, during, and after school. Physical activity opportunities will be in addition to, not in lieu of, physical education.

Recess or other physical activity time will not be cancelled for instructional make-up time, nor will it be withheld for disciplinary action unless the student is a danger to him or herself or others. This does not include participation on sport teams that may have specific academic requirements. Classroom teachers will be provided with a list of ideas for alternative ways to discipline students.

The District is committed to encouraging physical activity through the following:

a)      Classroom Physical Activity Breaks (Elementary)

         All classroom teachers, and particularly those engaged in the instruction of K through 5 students, are strongly encouraged to incorporate into the school day short breaks for students that include physical activity, especially after long periods of inactivity.

b)      Recess (Elementary)

         All elementary students will be offered one daily period of recess. This requirement will not apply on days where students arrive late, leave early, or are otherwise on campus for less than a full day. Outdoor recess will be offered when weather permits.

c)      Active Academics

         Teachers are encouraged to incorporate kinesthetic learning approaches into core learning subjects when possible to limit sedentary behavior during the school day.

d)      Before and After School Activities

         The District will offer opportunities for all students to participate in physical activity before and/or after the school day through various methods, such as physical activity clubs, intramurals, and interscholastic sports.

e)      Active Transport

         The District supports active transport to and from school, i.e. walking or biking. The District will encourage this behavior by securing storage facilities for bicycles and equipment and instructing students on walking and bicycling safety. The District strongly encourages the use of appropriate protective wear, such as helmets.

Physical Education

The District will have a Board-approved Physical Education Plan on file with the New York State Education Department that meets or exceeds the requirements set forth in the Commissioner's regulations. All students will be required to fulfill the physical education requirements set forth in the Commissioner's regulations as a condition of graduating from the District's schools.


*Other School-Based Activities that Promote Student Wellness

The District is committed to establishing a school environment that is conducive to healthy eating and physical activity for all. The District will, therefore, pursue the following:

Community Partnerships

The District will develop, enhance, and continue relationships with community partners in support of the implementation of this wellness policy. Existing and new community partnerships will be evaluated to ensure they are consistent with this wellness policy and its goals. The District will provide all community partners with a copy of this wellness policy so that they are aware of the District's requirements and goals.

Professional Development

When feasible, the District will offer annual professional development  opportunities and resources for staff to increase knowledge and skills about promoting healthy behaviors in the classroom and school (e.g., increasing the use of kinesthetic teaching approaches or incorporating nutrition lessons into math class). Professional learning will help District staff understand the connections between academics and health and the ways in which health and wellness are integrated into ongoing district reform or academic improvement plans/efforts.

Policy References:

 

42 USC. §§ 1758, 1758b

7 CFR. §§ 210.10, 210.11,  210.18,  210.31, and 220.8

USDA, SP 24-2017, Local School Wellness Policy: Guidance and Q&As (Apr. 6, 2017)

81 Fed. Reg. 50,151 (July 29, 2016) (codified at 7 C.F.R. pts. 210 & 220)

Education Law § 915

8 NYCRR § 135.4

Memorandum from N.Y. St. Educ. Department on Smart Snacks Standards and Fundraisers (Sept. 16, 2014)

 

Policy Cross References:                                                                              

5660 -School Food Service Program (Lunch and Breakfast)


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