Santa Rosa earns Gold Healthy School District status

For the second year in a row Santa Rosa County School District has qualified as a Healthy School District, earning a gold level designation.

To achieve the recognition the district had to conduct a thorough self-assessment of activities such as health and physical education, nutrition services, psychological and social services, and staff wellness efforts.

“Our district has been awarded the Gold school healthy district award,”said Director of Student Services Sherry Smith, who announced the award and thanked School Health Advisory Committee (SHAC) members, including Karen Barber and Leslie Bell, at the Sept. 23 school board meeting. Smith noted the SHAC helped complete the detailed application required earn the designation.

Rachael Terrin, a school wellness and nutrition consultant who serves on the Executive Committee of Florida Action for Healthy Kids, presented the school district with a commemorative flag at the meeting to mark the achievement.

Terrin said the Coordinated School Health Partnership (CSHP), which awards the designation, is a grassroots partnership consisting of nonprofits such as the American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, and other organizations. She noted the primary purpose of CSHP is advocacy for school issues and recognizing excellence among Florida school districts.

Terrin noted the award was developed to recognize and celebrate the hard work and success of school districts related to physical, mental and social health of students and staff.“Your district has demonstrated a high level of success in all areas of the assessment,” noted Terrin, who says the effort is effective in reducing and eliminating the barriers to learning and supports academic achievement.

Terrin pointed out Santa Rosa County School District was one of the first of three school districts in Florida to achieve the Gold status in 2013.“Thank you for being on the forefront and a leader,” added Terrin, who congratulated the district for earning the recognition for a second year.

“Health education and wellness education is paramount,” noted Superintendent Tim Wyrosdick, adding, “It demonstrates the collaborative effort we have in Santa Rosa County.”

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