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District Schools Chosen for National Wellness and Nutrition Award

Friday, September 21, 2012
USDA HealthierUS School Challenge Promotes Physical Activity, Curbs Childhood Obesity

Washington, DC – The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) today announced ten additional District of Columbia Schools have been honored among the healthiest nationwide as part of the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) HealthierUS School Challenge (HUSSC) Award Program.

Selected to receive recognition and a monetary award by USDA after a rigorous application process and evaluation criteria, new 2012 HUSSC designees are:

  • Raymond Education Campus (Ward 4)
  • Shepherd Elementary School (Ward 4)
  • Davis Elementary School (Ward 7)
  • Sharpe Health School (Ward 4)
  • Brent Elementary School (Ward 6)
  • Seaton Elementary School (Ward 2)
  • Plummer Elementary School  (Ward 7)
  • Kimball Elementary School (Ward 7)
  • Davis Elementary School (Ward 7)
  • Roosevelt High School (Ward 4)
  • Turner at Green Elementary School  (Ward 8)

Celebrated for engaging students in nutrition-based learning, promoting physical activities to support wellness and providing healthy food and beverage options to curb childhood obesity, 18 District of Columbia schools have received HUSSC recognition since 2010, including Anne Beers Elementary School (Ward 7), Aiton Elementary School (Ward 7) and Martin Luther King Junior Elementary School (Ward 8), who received HUSSC awards during an recognition ceremony earlier in the summer. 

“Every student in the District is entitled to a top notch education, and that includes year-round access to physical activity and nutritious meals throughout the day,” said State Superintendent Hosanna Mahaley Jones, noting that for seven consecutive years, Washington, DC.has ranked first nationally in childhood summer nutrition for participation, meals distributed and percent of children served that qualified for free and reduced price meals through the DC Free Summer Meals Program.

“A healthy body is essential to creating a healthy mind, so I commend these schools for their commitment to providing District children the strong start and wellness resources needed to be the most productive students possible.”

Citing the DC Healthy Schools Act of 2010 as one of the most ambitious health and nutrition initiatives in the country,  Mahaley Jones also praised USDA and the OSSE Division of Wellness and Nutrition Services for leading the nation in school breakfast participation among children from low-income areas during the 2010-2011 school year, increasing school breakfast participation for District public and charter school students by 35% and allowing Washington DC’s national ranking to jump from 20th to 1st in one year.

“This is possible with our work with USDA, OSSE is proud to be part of the solutions for healthy DC schools, and we look forward to reaching even more District children in the future.”

Note: Additional information about the USDA HealthierUS School Challenge and Community is available online via http://teamnutrition.usda.gov.