Student Wellness Progress
January 29, 2018
Dear Princeton Public Schools Families and Community,
Wellness is a topic often discussed in families, with friends, with medical professionals, and on television as well. Our school district has a wellness policy that is required by law, since 2006.
Every year the wellness policy goes through a new iteration, with additional actions added to improve our students’ health and wellbeing. I thought it would be informational for you to find out some of our district’s activities in wellness.
We did a parent survey last spring, and here are the takeaways:
Parents want students to have more protein in their meals,
Parents are willing to pay more for lunches, and
Parents would like more physical education and recess for elementary students.
Here are our actions, to uphold their requests.
More Protein in Meals
Our food service folks have helped us with this request. For a first step, we have increased protein choices for breakfasts this year.
Paying More for Lunches
We increased lunch prices $.10 this year, and this is something we always need to weigh, trying to offer a good meal within family budgets.
More Physical Education and Recess
One activity our students have participated in is the Walk to School. This involves all students in grades K-8, walking together to school. Since most of our students ride the bus, this involved the buses dropping students off to walk to school together. This year we are participating in this twice, once in the fall and once in the spring.
Another effort we have encouraged was moving from selling sweets to having our elementary students participate in a walkathon instead. This is a two-in-one benefit; students raise funds and they get exercise.
It should also be noted our Primary Students began receiving double physical education, beginning the fall of 2016. Prior to then, students have physical education once per week. Now it is twice per week.
Other Activities 2017-2018
We have been discouraging the use of non-whole food or beverages for incentives.
Our food service folks have created homemade breakfast muffins with reduced sugar content.
Our teachers in Pre K through Grade 5 are incorporating movement in class time.
There are three items we are planning for next year:
Exploring the idea of recess before lunch,
Offering non-food birthday treats, and
Recommending healthy options for in school snacks.
Wellness is an area we take very seriously. Healthy students mean good learning, and we will continue to try to improve our practices to support wellness.
Dr. Julia A. Espe, Superintendent of Princeton Public Schools