The U.S. Congress established a requirement in the Child Nutrition and Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Reauthorization Act of 2004, that all school districts with a federally funded school meal program draft a local school wellness policy. Section 204 of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (the Act) added Section 9A to the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (NSLA) (42 U.S.C. 1758b), Local School Wellness Policy Implementation. The provisions set forth in Section 204 expand upon the previous local wellness policy requirement from the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004.
The law requires that the policy must, at a minimum, (1) include goals for nutrition education, nutrition promotion, physical activity, and other school-based activities that promote student wellness; (2) establish nutrition guidelines for all foods available on each school campus during the school day with the objectives of promoting student health and reducing childhood obesity; (3) provide assurance that those guidelines for reimbursable school meals shall not be less restrictive than regulations and guidance applicable to school meals issued by the Secretary of Agriculture; (4) establish a plan for measuring the implementation of the local wellness policy, including designation of one or more persons with operational responsibility for ensuring that the schools meet the wellness policy; (5) involve parents, students, teachers of physical education, school health professionals, and representatives of the school food authority, school board, school administrators, and the public, in the development of the school wellness policy; and (6) inform and update the public (including parents, students, and others in the community) about the content and implementation of the local wellness policy, including the extent to which schools are in compliance with the local wellness policy, the extent to which the local wellness policy compares to model local wellness policies, and to describe the progress made in attaining goals of the local wellness policy.
Briya Public Charter School (Briya PCS) recognizes that nutrition education, food served in school, and physical activity each affect student wellness. We also recognize the important connection between a healthy diet and a student’s ability to learn effectively and achieve high standards in school. Therefore, we will use the above requirements as a baseline and expand the policy to cover additional student wellness areas.
Section 1: Ensuring Quality Nutrition Education, Health Education and Physical Education
Briya PCS aims to provide age-appropriate and culturally sensitive instruction in nutrition, health and physical education that helps students develop the knowledge, attitudes, and skills to enjoy healthy eating habits and a physically active lifestyle.
Health and Nutrition Education
Briya PCS will work to develop a health and nutrition education program that:
- is a comprehensive and designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to promote and protect their health;
- is part of not only life skills classes, but also includes education in family health;
- includes enjoyable, culturally-relevant activities; and
- promotes fruits, vegetables, whole grain products, low-fat and fat-free dairy products, healthy food preparation methods, and health-enhancing nutrition practices.
Briya PCS acknowledges the positive benefits of physical activity for student health and academic achievement and promotes the goal of 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Also, recognizing that physical education is a crucial and integral part of a student’s education, the school will provide opportunities to ensure that students engage in healthful vigorous physical activity to promote and develop the student’s physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being. Besides promoting high levels of personal achievement and a positive self-image, physical education activities should teach students how to cooperate in the achievement of common goals.
The components of the school’s physical education program shall include a variety of kinesthetic activities, within the limits of the school’s infrastructure and location. Suitably adapted physical activity will be provided for students with physical disabilities that may restrict excessive physical exertion. Additionally, the school prohibits withholding or requiring physical activity as punishment.
Section 2: Establishing Nutritional Guidelines for All Foods Served and Sold on Campus During the School Day.
A component of the educational mission of Briya PCS is teaching students to establish and maintain life-long healthy eating habits. This mission shall be accomplished, in part, through selling and serving healthful food in the school. Briya PCS will ensure that all foods available on campus are consistent with federal and Healthy Schools Act guidelines.
Section 3: Goals for Increasing the Environmental Sustainability of the school
Briya PCS will seek to increase the environmental sustainability of the school by contracting with food service vendors that use and serve locally grown, locally processed and unprocessed foods. Additionally, the school will seek to establish a recycling program to increase environmental sustainability.
Section 4: Establishing a Plan for Measuring the Impact and Implementation of the Local Wellness Policy
Briya PCS shall develop a steering committee, including students and staff for the development, implementation, and monitoring of the wellness policy; and this committee shall also be responsible for the annual evaluation of the policy, and tri-annual update.
Section 6: Community Involvement
Briya PCS will seek involvement from the school and surrounding community in the development and implementation of the local wellness policy. Representatives will include students, teachers and school health professionals, as well as, representatives of the school administration and community. Additionally, we will disseminate the wellness policy to students through posting it in the school’s office and on the school’s website.