Subject: Wellness Policy
One of the most important ways in which the Dickinson Independent School District can actively help children perform better as students is to provide them with the nutrition, the knowledge and the skills necessary for the healthy growth and development of their minds and bodies. Wellness education involves both an educational and an implementation process and takes place within the total school environment. Healthy eating and physical activity, essential for a healthy weight, are also linked to reduced risk for many chronic diseases. Obesity rates have doubled in children and tripled in adolescents over the last two decades, and physical inactivity and excessive calorie intake are the predominant causes of obesity. Schools have a responsibility to help students and staff establish and maintain lifelong, healthy eating and exercise patterns. Well-planned and well-implemented school wellness policies have been shown to positively influence students' eating and physical activity levels.
To establish a policy that addresses nutrition education goals, physical activity goals, nutrition standards for all foods available on school campuses during the school day when school is in session, and other school-based activity goals designed to promote student and staff wellness. This plan shall make effective use of school and community resources and equitably serve the needs and interests of all students and staff, taking into consideration differences in cultural norms.
The Dickinson Independent School District is committed to providing a school environment that enhances the learning and the development of lifelong wellness practices. We recognize that good health fosters student attendance and education. We also recognize the vital part that schools play in influencing and promoting wellness, protecting children's health, and supporting their ability to learn through healthy eating and physical activity. We recognize that a healthy school environment goes beyond nutritious school meals in the cafeteria, and engages staff and community in the pursuit of activities and strategies to improve the long term health and well-being of our students. It is within this frame of reference that this policy is designed and will be implemented.
Nutrition education goals: designed to exert a positive influence on students' eating behaviors.
Physical activity goals: to provide opportunities for every student to develop the knowledge and skills for specific physical activities, to understand the short and long term benefits of a physically active and healthy lifestyle.
Nutrition standards: to ensure that reimbursable school meals meet the program requirements and nutrition standards set forth under USDA. Additionally, these standards will address all foods and beverages sold or served to students during the school day while school is in session, including those available outside of the school meal programs.
School-based activity goals: to create and maintain a school enviroment that provides consistent wellness messages and is conducive to healthy eating and physical activity.