America's Healthiest Schools: Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School
Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School was named one of America’s Healthiest Schools by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. The school met stringent standards set by the Alliance’s Healthy Schools Program for serving healthier meals and snacks, getting students moving more, offering high-quality physical and health education and empowering school leaders to become healthy role models. Aside from home, kids spend most of their time at school, making schools important places to influence kids’ behavior and lifelong health habits. Research shows that healthy students learn better.
“Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School has made tremendous strides in creating a healthier school climate over the past three years,” said Physical Education Teacher Paula Reynolds. “The school community has created an environment where being healthy and making healthy choices are the norm, and it’s now just the way we do things at Roosevelt.”
This healthy school environment gives students many opportunities to be active and to eat healthy each day. This year, the school increased their number of physical education minutes from 200 to 300 minutes every two weeks. They have hosted a number of 1-mile fun runs for students, many corresponding with holidays such as the “Turkey Trot” and the “Eggercise Hunt,” which have resulted in school-wide participation and excitement. Students also participate in afterschool sports and a running team, both of which allow competition outside of school in order to get involved with a more active community.
This year, Roosevelt was the first elementary school in the district to offer a salad bar to all grades, allowing students to add more fresh fruits and vegetables to their plate each day. Fundraisers and school celebrations are now centered on healthy food choices, reinforcing the norm at Roosevelt Elementary. Reynolds attributes the school’s success to working with the Healthy Schools Program. “We were able to use the Healthy School’s Program tools to create policies, make positive changes, and set goals to improve the healthy climate on campus. Our goal to become a National Healthy Schools Gold Award-winning school would not have been possible without the resources provided by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.”