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This week’s healthy schools highlights

Fighting obesity in Chicago Public Schools

See for yourself what some energetic, health-loving people are doing in Chicago to get kids more involved in physical fitness and running in this video.

Join Action for Healthy Kids on Worldwide Recess Day


Reserve your Webinar seat now.

 Join Action for Healthy Kids’ Board Member, Dr. Toni Yancey, author of Instant Recess: How to Build a Fit Nation for the 21st Century, in support of Worldwide Recess Day. Brought to you by KEEN, the webinar, to be run from 9:15 to 9:45 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14,  is designed to help adults reclaim playtime with short, daily breaks of physical activity.

Take a few minutes on Sept. 14 to get away from your desk and play. Dr. Yancey will introduce the movement, then we’ll spend 10 minutes being active in an Instant Recess break. After registering, you’ll receive a confirmation e-mail explaining how to join the webinar.

Childhood obesity as a strategic priority for schools

In a school system, how do you know what’s really important? The answer to this question is, you take a look at their website, check out their mission statements, and see what they’ve recognized as strategic priorities for the school year. This will tell you in black and white what’s really important to this school system, and what’s less important. Read more at Examiner.

Record August temps heat up climate control debate in schools

It’s the heat, not the budget. More than $250 million in cuts to K-12 education have not dialed back school heating and cooling budgets. But hot students and bothered parents said classrooms were still too hot as school resumed, and districts are talking about possible solutions. Read more in the Denver Post.

Webinar on farm-to- school initiatives

LiveWell Colorado’s new Farm to School Primer is a guidebook to facilitating local food relationships in Colorado. The primer provides a snapshot of current school food conditions in Colorado, demonstrates how Colorado schools can increase the use of fresh and local foods, discusses how some Colorado schools are addressing common concerns and addresses the ways in which the community at large can get involved in making Farm to School successful in Colorado.

So how can you get involved? Whether you are a health-focused educator, a local producer seeking new channels of distribution or a concerned parent or community member, the Farm to School Primer can help you get started.

LiveWell Colorado will also host a webinar from 11 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Sept. 27, which will offer an introduction to the Farm to School Primer and discuss resources you can use to start or expand your involvement in Farm to School. Click here to register for the free webinar.

Physical activity requirements in Colo. schools

Earlier this year, Gov. Hickenlooper signed HB11-1069, legislation that requires all Colorado public elementary schools to provide students the opportunity for 600 minutes of physical activity per month (approximately 30 minutes a day) starting with the 2011-2012 school year. This webinar provides case studies and resources to support schools, parents and other stakeholders in meeting and exceeding this requirement by integrating quality physical activity into the school day and school culture. Speakers from the Colorado Legacy Foundation and a variety of school districts highlight their successful physical education and physical activity efforts.

Boston launches ad campaign against sugary beverages

The teen, perspiration dripping from his brow, longingly eyes a cool orange soda in the clutches of a young woman. He then strides into a store, buys himself one, eagerly twists off the cap and, just as he is about to gulp, a glowing yellow glob soars through the air and smacks him on the head. Read more in the Boston Globe.

Colorado Proud School Meal Day helps children learn value of local foods

On Sept. 14, schools across the state will celebrate Colorado agriculture and educate schoolchildren about healthy eating during Colorado Proud School Meal Day.

Now in its eighth year, the event recognizes the need for schools to encourage eating habits that will promote a lifetime of optimal health. The Colorado Departments of Agriculture and Education invite schools to plan activities that teach children about the importance of eating healthy local foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats and low-fat dairy products.

Sample School Meal Day activities include serving local foods during student mealtimes, incorporating nutrition- and agriculture-focused lessons into curriculum, inviting local farmers and ranchers to give presentations to students and hosting school garden plantings or harvests.

In 2010, more than 200 schools participated in School Meal Day, reaching nearly 60,000 students. More than 40 chef demos and producer presentations were held at schools across the state.

  • For more information about Colorado Proud School Meal Day, click here.
  • To view a webinar with resources and case studies for Colorado Proud School Meal Day, click here.

If you are looking for Colorado food products, visit Colorado MarketMaker at www.comarketmaker.com.

Alliance for a Healthier Generation celebrates Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

In honor of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a national nonprofit founded by the American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation to end childhood obesity, will spotlight the success of kids, schools and communities across the country working to increase physical activity and improve nutritious eating for kids. With the help of national celebrities, media organizations and kids themselves, the Alliance will elevate the issue of childhood obesity, showcase positive transformations happening around the country, and offer information to help anyone join the effort and be a part of the solution. Read more at the PR Newswire.

About our First Person series:

First Person is where Chalkbeat features personal essays by educators, students, parents, and others trying to improve public education. Read our submission guidelines here.