328 Schools Named the 2016 Healthiest Schools in America

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Award-Winning Schools Represent 29 Different States and the District of Columbia

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Research tells us students who attend healthy schools perform better academically, have better attendance and their behavior improves.

More than 300 schools were recognized today as the healthiest schools in America by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, an organization founded by the American Heart Association and Clinton Foundation, working to empower kids to develop lifelong, healthy habits.

These schools meet or exceed 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.

“Healthy schools are better schools—it’s that simple,” says Dr. Howell Wechsler, CEO of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. “Research tells us students who attend healthy schools perform better academically, have better attendance and their behavior improves.”

The 328 schools recognized as America’s Healthiest Schools represent 29 different states and the District of Columbia. California, Georgia, New Jersey, South Carolina and Texas have the highest number of healthiest schools represented.

Award-winning schools are serving as best-in-class examples of a nationwide movement to create healthier environments for kids. All recognized schools:

  • Meet or exceed updated federal nutrition standards for school meals, which include increased fruits and vegetables, whole grain-rich items and meals lower in saturated fat
  • Offer school breakfast to their students every day
  • Meet or exceed snack and beverage requirements for the federal Smart Snacks in School standards
  • Implement district wellness policies and report progress annually
  • Provide students with at least 60 minutes of physical education per week and ensure activity throughout the school day

Schools receiving the highest level of recognition, at the Gold level, include:

  • Belcher Elementary School, Clearwater, FL
  • Beryl Heights Elementary School, Redondo Beach, CA
  • Blanca E. Sanchez Elementary School, McAllen, TX
  • Brockman Elementary School, Columbia, SC
  • Bunnell Elementary School, Bunnell, FL
  • Curtis Fundamental Elementary School, Dunedin, FL
  • Freedom Elementary School, Fort Sill, OK
  • Garrett Morgan High School, Cleveland, OH
  • La Quinta Middle School, La Quinta, CA
  • Loma Vista Middle School, Riverside, CA
  • Monterey Highlands Elementary School, Monterey Park, CA
  • Rangerville Elementary School, San Benito, TX
  • Seaton Elementary School, Washington, D.C.
  • Theodore Roosevelt Elementary School, Indio, CA

Five school districts have every eligible school in the district receiving 2016 National Healthy Schools Awards. Those school districts include:

  • Chamberlain School District 7-1, South Dakota
  • Kelliher School District 36, Minnesota
  • Mission Consolidated Independent School District, Texas
  • Roselle Public Schools, New Jersey
  • Stanfield Elementary School District 24, Arizona

Every school recognized is enrolled in the Alliance’s Healthy Schools Program—one of the nation’s largest school-based childhood obesity prevention initiatives, which has reached more than 20 million students by working with nearly 35,000 schools. Schools are eligible for National Healthy Schools Awards at the Bronze, Silver or Gold level, based on the standards they achieve.

The Alliance’s Healthy Schools Program’s work with schools nationwide is supported by the Cook County Department of Public Health, Desert Healthcare Foundation, The JPB Foundation, Kaiser Permanente National Community Benefit Fund at the East Bay Community Foundation, Missouri Foundation for Health, Mt. Sinai Health Care Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Saint Luke’s Foundation, Target Corporation and United Way of Greater Cleveland.

Throughout the month of September, the America’s Healthiest Schools campaign will celebrate the accomplishments of these 328 schools and encourage parents, teachers, administrators, community members and students to make a difference in their own school by visiting healthiergeneration.org. Any school in the country can join the Alliance’s Healthy Schools Program at no cost.

America’s Healthiest Schools campaign partners include the founders of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, the American Heart Association and the Clinton Foundation.

Organizations providing support for the 2016 Leaders Summit and America’s Healthiest Schools campaign include: Target Corporation, Sanofi, SPARK, a division of School Specialty, Inc., GoNoodle Inc. and GOPHER.

Celebrity voices include Joy Bauer, Bonnie Bernstein, Cassey Ho, Jillian Michaels, and Rachael Ray and her Yum-o! organization.

The Alliance is working with more than 60 promotional partners, to shine a spotlight on the healthiest schools in America. Promotional partners include Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Action for Healthy Kids, Active Living Research, Afterschool Alliance, After-School All-Stars, American College of Sports Medicine, American School Health Association, A World Fit For Kids!, BOKS, Build Our Kids' Success, Capital District Physicians’ Health Plan, Center for Science in the Public Interest, ChangeLab Solutions, ChildObesity 180, Common Threads, Ergotron, First Focus, Focused Fitness, Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), FoodCorps, Funders’ Collaborative on Youth Organizing, Girls on the Run, Healthy Eating Research, Health Resources in Action, Healthy Schools Campaign, Initiative for Healthy Schools, Institute of Child Nutrition, IT'S TIME TEXAS, Kaiser Permanente Thriving Schools, Kids in the Game, Let's Move! Active Schools, MomsRising, National AfterSchool Association, National Association of Chronic Disease Directors, National Association of School Nurses, National Farm to School Network, National Institute on Out-of-School Time, National League of Cities, National Network of Public Health Institutes, National Recreation and Parks Association, New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race, Partnership for a Healthier America, Physical Activity Policy Research Network Plus, Policy to Practice in Youth Programs, President's Council for Fitness, Sports & Nutrition, Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity, Safe Routes to Schools National Partnership, Salud America!, Save the Children, School-Based Health Alliance, School Meals that Rock, School Nutrition Association, SHAPE America, Share Our Strength, The Pew Charitable Trusts/Kids Safe and Healthful Foods Project, Up2Us Sports, Voices for Healthy Kids and Yoga Foster.

To view the complete list of America’s Healthiest Schools visit http://www.healthiergeneration.org.

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