Walton Academy for the Performing Arts
Wellness Policies on Physical Activity and Nutrition
The following is the Walton Academy for the Performing Arts wellness policies;
Walton Academy is committed to providing school environments that promote and protect children’s health, well-being, and ability to learn by supporting healthy eating and physical activity. Therefore, it is the policy of the school that:
; The school will engage students, parents, teachers, food service
professionals, health professionals, and other interested community
members in developing, implementing, monitoring, and reviewing district-
wide nutrition and physical activity policies.
; All students in grades K-5 will have opportunities, support, and
encouragement to be physically active on a regular basis.
; Foods and beverages sold or served at school will meet the nutrition
recommendations of the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
; Qualified child nutrition professionals will provide students with access to
a variety of affordable, nutritious, and appealing foods that meet the
health and nutrition needs of students; will accommodate the religious,
ethnic, and cultural diversity of the student body in meal planning; and will
provide clean, safe, and pleasant settings and adequate time for students
; To the maximum extent practicable, the school will participate in available
federal school meal programs (including the School Breakfast Program,
National School Lunch Program [including after-school snacks], Summer
Food Service Program.
; The school will provide nutrition education and physical education to
foster lifelong habits of healthy eating and physical activity, and will
establish linkages between health education and school meal programs,
and with related community services.
TO ACHIEVE THESE POLICY GOALS:
I. School Health Council
The school will create, strengthen, or work within existing school health councils to develop, implement, monitor, review, and, as necessary, revise school nutrition and physical activity policies. The councils also will serve as resources to the school site for implementing those policies. The school health council will consist of a group of individuals representing the school and community including parents, teachers, health professionals, and members of the public.
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II. Nutritional Quality of Foods and Beverages Sold and Served on Campus
Meals served through the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs will:
; be appealing and attractive to children;
; be served in clean and pleasant settings;
; meet, at a minimum, nutrition requirements established by local, state,
and federal statutes and regulations;
; offer a variety of fruits and vegetables;
; serve only low-fat (1%) and fat-free milk and nutritionally-equivalent non-
dairy alternatives (to be defined by USDA); and
; ensure that half of the served grains are whole grain.
; will not be less restricted than regulations and guidance issued by the
The school will engage students and parents, through taste-tests of new entrees
and surveys, in selecting foods sold through the school meal programs in order
to identify new, healthful, and appealing food choices. In addition, the school will
share information about the nutritional content of meals with parents and
students. Such information could be made available on menus, a website, on
cafeteria menu boards, placards, or other point-of-purchase materials.
Breakfast. To ensure that all children have breakfast, either at home or at school, in order to meet their nutritional needs and enhance their ability to learn:
; The school will, to the extent possible, operate the School Breakfast
; The school will, to the extent possible, arrange schedules and utilize
methods to serve school breakfasts that encourage participation,
including serving breakfast in the classroom, “grab-and-go” breakfast, or
breakfast during morning break or recess.
; The school will notify parents and students of the availability of the
School Breakfast Program.
; The school will encourage parents to provide a healthy breakfast for their
children through newsletter articles, take-home materials, or other means.
Free and Reduced-priced Meals. The school will make every effort to eliminate any social stigma attached to, and prevent the overt identification of, students who are eligible for free and reduced-price school meals. Toward this end, the school may utilize electronic identification and payment systems; promote the availability of school meals to all students; and/or use nontraditional methods for serving school meals, such as “grab-
and-go” or classroom breakfast.
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Meal Times and Scheduling. The school:
; will provide students with at least 10 minutes to eat after sitting down for
breakfast and 20 minutes after sitting down for lunch;
; to the extent possible, the school will schedule meal periods at
appropriate times, e.g., lunch should be scheduled between 10 a.m. and
; will not schedule tutoring, club, or organizational meetings or activities
during mealtimes, unless students may eat during such activities;
; will schedule lunch periods to follow recess periods (in elementary
; will provide students access to hand washing or hand sanitizing before
they eat meals or snacks; and
; will take reasonable steps to accommodate the tooth-brushing regimens
of students with special oral health needs (e.g., orthodontia or high tooth
Qualifications of School Food Service Staff. Qualified nutrition professionals will
administer the school meal programs. As part of the school’s responsibility to operate a
food service program, we will provide continuing professional development for all nutrition professionals in the school. Staff development programs will include appropriate certification and/or training programs for child nutrition directors, school nutrition managers, and cafeteria workers, according to their levels of responsibility.
Sharing of Foods and Beverages. The school will discourage students from sharing
their foods or beverages with one another during meal or snack times, given concerns about allergies and other restrictions on some children’s diets.
Elementary School. The school food service program will approve and provide all food and beverage sales to students in the elementary school. Given young children’s limited
nutrition skills, food in elementary schools should be sold as balanced meals. If available, foods and beverages sold individually should be limited to low-fat and non-fat milk, fruits, and non-fried vegetables.
; Allowed: water or seltzer water without added caloric sweeteners; fruit
and vegetable juices and fruit-based drinks that contain at least 50% fruit
juice and that do not contain additional caloric sweeteners; unflavored or
flavored low-fat or fat-free fluid milk and nutritionally-equivalent nondairy
beverages (to be defined by USDA);
; Not allowed: soft drinks containing caloric sweeteners; sports drinks; iced
teas; fruit-based drinks that contain less than 50% real fruit juice or that
contain additional caloric sweeteners; beverages containing caffeine,
excluding low-fat or fat-free chocolate milk (which contain trivial amounts
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; A food item sold individually:
o will have no more than 35% of its calories from fat (excluding nuts,
seeds, peanut butter, and other nut butters) and 10% of its
calories from saturated and trans fat combined;
o will have no more than 35% of its weight from added sugars;
o will contain no more than 230 mg of sodium per serving for chips,
cereals, crackers, French fries, baked goods, and other snack
items; will contain no more than 480 mg of sodium per serving for
pastas, meats, and soups; and will contain no more than 600 mg
of sodium for pizza, sandwiches, and main dishes.
; A choice of at least two fruits and/or non-fried vegetables will be offered
for sale at any location on the school site where foods are sold. Such
items could include, but are not limited to, fresh fruits and vegetables;
100% fruit or vegetable juice; fruit-based drinks that are at least 50% fruit
juice and that do not contain additional caloric sweeteners; cooked, dried,
or canned fruits (canned in fruit juice or light syrup); and cooked, dried, or
canned vegetables (that meet the above fat and sodium guidelines).
; Limit portion sizes of foods and beverages sold individually to
those listed below:
o One and one-quarter ounces for chips, crackers, popcorn, cereal,
trail mix, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, or jerky;
o One ounce for cookies;
o Two ounces for cereal bars, granola bars, pastries, muffins,
doughnuts, bagels, and other bakery items;
o Four fluid ounces for frozen desserts, including, but not limited to,
low-fat or fat-free ice cream;
o Eight ounces for non-frozen yogurt;
o Twelve fluid ounces for beverages, excluding water; and
o The portion size of a la carte entrees and side dishes,
including potatoes, will not be greater than the size of
comparable portions offered as part of school meals. Fruits
and non-fried vegetables are exempt from portion-size limits.
Fundraising Activities. To support children’s health and school nutrition-education
efforts, school fundraising activities will not involve food or will use only foods that meet
the above nutrition and portion size standards for foods and beverages sold individually.
Schools will encourage fundraising activities that promote physical activity. The school
will make available a list of ideas for acceptable fundraising activities.
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Snacks. Snacks served during the school day or in after-school care or enrichment programs will make a positive contribution to children’s diets and health, with an
emphasis on serving fruits and vegetables as the primary snacks and water as the primary beverage. The school will assess if and when to offer snacks based on timing of school meals, children’s nutritional needs, children’s ages, and other considerations.
The district will disseminate a list of healthful snack items to teachers, after-school program personnel, and parents.
; If eligible, the school will provide snacks through after-school programs and will
pursue receiving reimbursements through the National School Lunch Program.
Rewards. The school will limit the use foods or beverages, especially those that do not meet the nutrition standards for foods and beverages sold individually (above), as rewards for academic performance or good behavior, and will not withhold food or beverages (including food served through school meals) as a punishment.
Celebrations. The school should limit celebrations that involve food during the school day to no more than one party per class per month. Each party should include no more than one food or beverage that does not meet nutrition standards for foods and beverages sold individually (above). The school will disseminate a list of healthy party ideas to parents and teachers.
School-sponsored Events (such as, but not limited to, athletic events, dances, or performances). Foods and beverages offered or sold at school-sponsored events outside the school day will meet the nutrition standards for meals or for foods and beverages sold individually (above).
III. Nutrition and Physical Activity Promotion and Food Marketing
Nutrition Education and Promotion. Walton Academy aims to teach,
encourage, and support healthy eating by students. The school will provide nutrition education and engage in nutrition promotion that:
; is offered at each grade level as part of a sequential,
comprehensive, standards-based program designed to provide
students with the knowledge and skills necessary to promote and
protect their health;
; is part of not only health education classes, but also classroom
instruction in subjects such as math, science, language arts,
social sciences, and elective subjects;
; includes enjoyable, developmentally-appropriate, culturally-
relevant, participatory activities, such as contests, promotions,
taste testing, farm visits, and school gardens;
; promotes fruits, vegetables, whole grain products, low-fat and fat-
free dairy products, healthy food preparation methods, and health-
enhancing nutrition practices;
; emphasizes caloric balance between food intake and energy
expenditure (physical activity/exercise);
; links with school meal programs, other school foods, and nutrition-
related community services;
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; teaches media literacy with an emphasis on food marketing; and
; includes training for teachers and other staff.
Integrating Physical Activity into the Classroom Setting. For students to receive the
nationally-recommended amount of daily physical activity (i.e., at least 50 minutes per
day) and for students to fully embrace regular physical activity as a personal behavior, students need opportunities for physical activity beyond physical education class. Toward that end:
; classroom health education will complement physical education by
reinforcing the knowledge and self-management skills needed to maintain
a physically-active lifestyle and to reduce time spent on sedentary
activities, such as watching television;
; opportunities for physical activity will be incorporated into other subject
; classroom teachers will provide short physical activity breaks between
lessons or classes, as appropriate.
Communications with Parents. The school will support parents’ efforts to provide a
healthy diet and daily physical activity for their children. The school will offer healthy eating seminars for parents, send home nutrition information, post nutrition tips on school websites, and provide nutrient analyses of school menus. The school will encourage parents to pack healthy lunches and snacks and to refrain from including beverages and foods that do not meet the above nutrition standards for individual foods and beverages. The school will provide parents a list of foods that meet the district’s snack standards and ideas for healthy celebrations/parties, rewards, and fundraising activities. In addition, the school will provide opportunities for parents to share their healthy food practices with others in the school community. The school will provide information about physical education and other school-based physical activity opportunities before, during, and after the school day; and support parents’ efforts to provide their children with opportunities to be physically active outside of school. Such supports will include sharing information about physical activity and physical education through a website, newsletter, or other take-home materials, special events, or physical education homework.
Food Marketing in Schools. School-based marketing will be consistent with nutrition education and health promotion. As such, the school will limit food and beverage
marketing to the promotion of foods and beverages that meet the nutrition standards for meals or for foods and beverages sold individually (above). School-based marketing of brands promoting predominantly low-nutrition foods and beverages is prohibited. The promotion of healthy foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products is encouraged. Examples of marketing techniques include the following: logos and brand names on/in vending machines, books or curricula, textbook covers, school supplies, scoreboards, school structures, and sports equipment; educational incentive programs that provide food as a reward; programs that provide schools with supplies when families buy low-nutrition food products; in-school television, such as Channel One; free samples or coupons; and food sales through fundraising activities. Marketing activities that promote healthful behaviors (and are therefore allowable) include: vending machine covers promoting water; pricing structures that promote healthy options in a la
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carte lines or vending machines; sales of fruit for fundraisers; and coupons for discount gym memberships.
Staff Wellness. Walton Academy highly values the health and well-being of every staff member and will plan and implement activities and policies that support personal efforts by staff to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The school will establish and maintain a staff wellness committee composed of at least one staff member, school health council member, local hospital representative, dietitian or other health professional, recreation program representative. (The staff wellness committee could be a subcommittee of the school health council.) The committee will develop, promote, and oversee a multifaceted plan to promote staff health and wellness. The plan should be based on input solicited from school staff and should outline ways to encourage healthy eating, physical activity, and other elements of a healthy lifestyle among school staff. The staff wellness committee should distribute its plan to the school health council annually.
IV. Physical Activity Opportunities and Physical Education
Daily Physical Education (P.E.) K-5. All students in grades K-5, including students
with disabilities, special health-care needs, and in alternative educational settings, will receive daily physical education (or its equivalent of 150 minutes/week for elementary school students) for the entire school year. All physical education will be taught by a certified physical education teacher. Student involvement in other activities involving physical activity (e.g., interscholastic or intramural sports) will not be substituted for meeting the physical education requirement. Students will spend at least 50 percent of physical education class time participating in moderate to vigorous physical activity.
Daily Recess. All elementary school students will have at least 20 minutes a day of supervised recess, preferably outdoors, during which schools should encourage moderate to vigorous physical activity verbally and through the provision of space and equipment. The school will discourage extended periods (i.e., periods of two or more
hours) of inactivity. When activities, such as mandatory school-wide testing, make it necessary for students to remain indoors for long periods of time, the school will give students periodic breaks during which they are encouraged to stand and be moderately active.
Physical Activity Opportunities Before and After School. The school will offer
extracurricular physical activity programs, such as physical activity clubs or intramural programs. The school will offer a range of activities that meet the needs, interests, and abilities of all students, including boys, girls, students with disabilities, and students with special health-care needs. After-school child care and enrichment programs will provide and encourage – verbally and through the provision of space, equipment, and activities –
daily periods of moderate to vigorous physical activity for all participants.
Physical Activity and Punishment. Teachers and other school and community
personnel will not use physical activity (e.g., running laps, pushups) or withhold
opportunities for physical activity (e.g., recess, physical education) as punishment.
Safe Routes to School. The school will assess and, if necessary and to the extent possible, make needed improvements to make it safer and easier for students to walk and bike to school. When appropriate, the school will work together with local public
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works, public safety, and/or police departments in those efforts. The school will explore the availability of federal “safe routes to school” funds, administered by the state
department of transportation, to finance such improvements.
Use of School Facilities Outside of School Hours. School spaces and facilities will
be available to students, staff, and community members before, during, and after the school day, on weekends, and during school vacations. These spaces and facilities also will be available to community agencies and organizations offering physical activity and nutrition programs. School policies concerning safety will apply at all times.
V. Monitoring and Policy Review
Monitoring. The superintendent or designee will ensure compliance with established district-wide nutrition and physical activity wellness policies. The principal or designee will ensure compliance with those policies in his/her school and will report on the school’s compliance to the school district superintendent or designee. School food
service staff, at the school or district level, will ensure compliance with nutrition policies within school food service areas and will report on this matter to the superintendent (or if done at the school level, to the school principal). In addition, the school district will report on the most recent USDA School Meals Initiative (SMI) review findings and any resulting changes. If the district has not received a SMI review from the state agency within the past five years, the district will request from the state agency that a SMI review be scheduled as soon as possible. The superintendent or designee will develop a summary report every year on district-wide compliance with the district’s established
nutrition and physical activity wellness policies, based on input from schools within the district. That report will be provided to the school board and also distributed to all school health councils, parent/teacher organizations, school principals, and school health services personnel in the district.
Policy Review. To help with the initial development of the district’s wellness policies, each school in the district will conduct a baseline assessment of the school’s existing 1nutrition and physical activity environments and policies. The results of those school-
by-school assessments will be compiled at the district level to identify and prioritize needs. Assessments will be repeated every three years to help review policy compliance, assess progress, and determine areas in need of improvement. As part of that review, the school district will review our nutrition and physical activity policies; provision of an environment that supports healthy eating and physical activity; and nutrition and physical education policies and program elements. The district, and individual schools within the district, will, as necessary, revise the wellness policies and develop work plans to facilitate their implementation.
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