Small changes at one Central Bucks middle school made a big difference in the health of its students and staff - and earned the school national recognition.
Tohickon Middle School recently was honored by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. It was one of 250 schools nationwide recognized for making its campus a healthier place for students and staff.
Founded by the American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation, the Alliance runs the Healthy Schools Program. It provides free support and training to more than 15,000 schools nationwide to help them reverse the national trend in childhood obesity, a spokeswoman said.
Tohickon won a National Recognition award for several changes it implemented.
- To encourage more everyday walking, the school's wellness council purchased pedometers for students and staff.
- To encourage interest in more strenuous exercise, the school added an elliptical machine to its fitness room.
- To encourage students and staff to eat breakfast - billed as the most important meal of the day but often skipped by many - the school added breakfast baskets with whole grains and fruits to its homerooms.
- To encourage better eating habits, the wellness council offered students free salads on "Go for the Greens Day."
- To encourage staff members to exercise more, the wellness council challenged them to an eight-week "Healthy Olympic Challenge" and offered a free dance program.
President Bill Clinton, American Heart Association President Donna Arnett, and NBC’s The Biggest Loser celebrity Bob Harper honored the winning schools in October during the Healthy Schools Program Forum in Little Rock, Ark.