A new project aimed at improving the health and wellness of schoolchildren in Oklahoma is about to start, with the help of a $1.8 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Oklahoma State Department of Education says “Project Get Fit! is designed to improve student access to nutrition, increase physical education opportunities and increase access to case management services for students with chronic health conditions.”
The project is a partnership between the Department of Education and the state’s Department of Health.
.@joy4ok announces Project Get Fit! designed to improve student access to ntrn, increase phys. ed. opportunities & help teachers with PD, evidence-based best practices to promote healthy schools! All made possible by a $1.8M grant! ?? #oklaed Details: https://t.co/M76BMILCRf— OK State Dept of Ed (@oksde) August 27, 2018
Officials say the program will serve all of Oklahoma’s public schools, but it will start “with a focus on five high-need districts.” Those districts are Calvin, Henryetta, Morris, Okmulgee, and Wilson.
“Oklahoma ranks 43rd in the United States in the health of its citizens, producing significant learning challenges for our children,” said State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister. “Access to better nutrition and more opportunities for physical activity enhance brain development that is essential for reasoning and concentration.”
She also says “Oklahoma is the only state in the nation to include nutrition as an academic intervention in its strategic plan.”
Superintendent Hofmeister is expected to visit three of the five "high-need" districts at the end of the month.