Policy 5661 – Health and Wellness

Health and Wellness Policy

5661.10 Nutrition and Nutrition Education
5661.20 Physical Activity
5661.30 Health Education
5661.40 Family Life/Sexual Health
5661.50 Counseling, Psychological, and Social Services
5661.60 Staff Wellness

5661.10 NUTRITION AND NUTRITION EDUCATION

Nutrition Education and promotion in the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District aims to teach, encourage, and support healthy eating by students. The Monroe­-Woodbury Central School District will work within the Health and Wellness Committee to develop, implement, monitor, review, and, as necessary revise school nutrition and physical activity policies.  The committee also will serve as a resource to school sites for implementing these policies.  The committee consists of a group of individuals representing the school and community, and includes parents, members of the community, students, food service director, members of the school board, school administrators, teachers, dietitian, and health professionals (including school nurses and school physician).

Nutritional Quality of Foods and Beverages Sold and Served on Campus School Meals

Meals served through the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs will:

  • Be appealing and attractive to children
  • Be served in clean, pleasant setting and be environmentally responsible
  • Provide school breakfasts and lunches that should at least meet the current nutritional standards required by the USDA School Breakfast and National School Lunch Programs found on the website for the USDA Food and Nutrition Service Department: https://www.fns.usda.gov/school-meals/child-nutrition-programs

The nutrient standards should at least meet those required by NYSED Child Nutrition Department guidelines for the current meal pattern utilized (currently traditional) found on the website http://portal.nysed.gov/portal/page/pref/CNKC/SMI_pp/Nutrient%20Targets%20Food%20Based.pdf

The district 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, including cultural and ethnic favorites.  In addition, the district will share information about the nutritional content of food items with parents and students.  This information will be made available through the website and on display in the cafeteria.

Breakfast

To ensure that all children in the District have breakfast, either at home or at school, in order to meet their nutritional needs and enhance their ability to learn:

  • The K­12 schools should operate the School Breakfast Program.  If a change needs to be made, Board approval will be required.
  • Each school should encourage parents to provide a healthy breakfast for their children through newsletter articles, take-­home materials, and other means.

Free and Reduced-­priced Meals

Our schools will continue to 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.  The schools will continue to use electronic identification and payment systems and promote the availability of school meals to all students.  Guidelines for reimbursable school meals will not be less restrictive than regulations and guidance issued by the Secretary of Agriculture pursuant to the Child Nutrition Act and the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act. The district will promote on its website local open summer meals programs to assist families facing food insecurity.

Meal Times and Scheduling

  • Lunch will be scheduled between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. or will annually request a waiver.
  • After obtaining food, students should have twenty minutes for lunch and ten minutes for breakfast Tutoring, clubs, meetings or activities will not be scheduled during mealtimes unless students may eat during such activities
  • Each school will attempt to schedule lunch periods to follow recess periods (in elementary schools)
  • Each school will provide students with access to hand washing before students eat meals or snacks Each elementary school will provide students with access to tooth­brushing for students with special oral health needs (e.g., orthodontia or high tooth decay risk).

Qualifications of School Food Service Staff

A registered dietitian will be contracted to work with the Director of Food Services to ensure that students will be served breakfast and lunch that not only meets the USDA requirements but is also of the highest nutritional content within the budgetary considerations. The District will hire a registered dietitian as a consultant for at least 80 hours each school year. School lunch managers will consult with the dietitian in creating new and nutritious selections for students. Managers and cafeteria workers participate in training programs, according to their levels of responsibility. The dietitian will also help with food taste tests by making suggestions in the preparation and selection of foods.  The Assistant Superintendent for Business will review with the Food Services Director the activities of the dietitian and plan for appropriate utilization of the consultant’s hours.

Sharing of Foods and Beverages

Staff should discourage students from buying and sharing their foods and beverages with one another during meal or snack times, given concerns about allergies and other restrictions on a significant number of children’s diets.

Foods and Beverages Sold Individually (i.e., foods sold outside of reimbursable school meals, such as through vending machines, cafeteria a la carte and snack lines, fundraisers, school stores, etc.)

All foods available on campus during the school day will have as their main objective to promote student health.  It is the responsibility of the food managers to monitor the vending machines and lines to ensure that the foods offered follow the guideline.  It is the responsibility of the staff in charge of the school stores and fundraisers to ensure that this policy is being followed on campus during the school day.  (“School day” as defined by the USDA is from midnight until 30 minutes after the end of school).

Elementary Schools

The school food service program in collaboration with the dietitian and the elementary principals should approve and provide all food and beverage sales to students in elementary schools.  Given young children’s limited nutritional skills and the need to model good nutrition taught through the educational programs, food in elementary schools should primarily be sold as balanced meals.   Food and beverages sold individually should be limited to low-­fat and non-­fat milk, flavored milks, fruits, non-­fried vegetables, water, and 100% fruit juices, frozen yogurt, low-­fat ice cream and a limited selection of other Smart Snack compliant snacks

Middle School/High School

In the middle school, all foods and beverages sold individually outside the reimbursable school meal program (including those sold through a la carte, vending machines, student stores, after school-sponsored programs or provided by teachers) during the school day must meet Smart Snack requirements. Programs for students after the school day should meet the following nutrition and portion size standards:

Beverages

  • Allowed: water, seltzer water and flavored waters; 100 % fruit and vegetable juices and fruit/ water drinks that contain 50% fruit juice; unflavored or flavored low­fat or fat­free fluid milk, and nutritionally equivalent non-dairy beverages (to be defined by the USDA)
  • Not allowed: beverages containing any additional sweeteners, artificial or natural, soft drinks; fruitbased drinks that contain less than 50% real fruit juice; beverages containing caffeine, taurine, guarana, including iced tea drinks, energy drinks
  • High School ONLY: Beverages containing additional sweeteners, both natural and artificial will be allowed.  Iced­tea and tea/juice combinations will be allowed.  No beverages containing taurine or guarana will be allowed.  Energy drinks will not be allowed.

Foods

  • A choice of at least two different fruits and/or non fried vegetables should 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/water and /or vegetable­based 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); and cooked, dried, or canned vegetables (that meet the above fat and sodium guidelines). Competitive food sales are not permitted from the start of the school day until the end of the last lunch period.
  • For the a la carte line, Middle School students will be limited to one a la carte beverage and one other item.  Exception will be made if the student is buying a la carte fruit, water, salad, or yogurt.

Non-district Fundraising Activities

To support children’s health and school nutrition­ education efforts, only 50% of school fundraising activities should involve food.  The foods sold must follow the nutritional guidelines outlined above. The remaining 50% of current school fundraising activities will not involve food.  The District encourages and supports fundraising activities that promote physical activity.  A list of acceptable ideas for fundraising will be available to clubs, teams and other groups involved in fundraising. NYS Child Nutrition Department does not permit ANY food based fundraiser sales during the school day.

School Store

The school stores will only sell food that is within the guidelines outlined above.

Bus Rewards

Bus drivers are encouraged to provide special treats for students that do not involve food.  The elementary bus of the month program will continue with a certificate for low fat ice­ cream, low fat frozen yogurt or frozen 100% juice bars.

Snacks

Snacks served during the school day should 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. Individual schools should determine if and when to allow 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, staff and parents through the Health Services Newsletter, the web site and the principal’s letters.

Rewards

Teachers and staff should only use foods or beverages for rewards that meet the nutrition standards for food and beverages sold individually (above), and should not withhold food or beverages (including food served through school meals) as a punishment.

Celebrations/ Class Parties/ Food brought from home for the whole class

Based on recommendations from the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatricians, principals, teachers and staff shall limit celebrations that involve food during the school day to no more than one per class per month.  Each party should include no more than one snack and beverage that does not meet nutrition standards for food and beverages sold individually (above).  Take home bags of candy are not permitted. The District will disseminate a list of healthy party ideas to parents and teachers.

Advisories

Teachers and staff shall limit food in advisories to once a month.  Only  foods and beverages that meet the above standards should be included.

Formal Instruction in Physical Education (PE)

ALL K­12 students in the district will receive instruction in PE on a regular basis, taught by certified physical education teachers.  The District is aligned with state and federal guidelines to provide instruction in a safe school setting.  Due to time requirements and instructional constraints, it is highly recommended that “pull outs” from elementary PE be eliminated.

Integrating Physical Activity into the Classroom Setting

Research links physical activity to academic success by improving concentration, memory and classroom behavior, therefore, promoting increased learning.  Opportunities for physical activity will be incorporated into the academic curriculum.  Teachers and staff will be offered staff development opportunities in how to integrate short, structured physical activities during the school day.

Physical Activity and Punishment

Recognizing the importance of periodic activity breaks during the school day, school personnel will not use loss of recess as punishment (unless serious safety issues to self or others exists or at the discretion of the building administrator based upon individual situations).  Conversely, physical activity (running laps, push­ups) will not be used for punishment.

Medical Excuses from Physical Education

A parent or guardian note to excuse a student from PE due to minor illness or injury will be accepted for ­2 days.  At the discretion of the school nurse, participation may be modified to “as tolerated”.  A doctor note must be presented to excuse a student from PE for 3 days or longer.  The school nurse has the right to discuss the injury or illness with the student, parent and/or doctor for further clarification.  Extended medical releases may be modified to “as tolerated” by the school nurse after approval from the doctor.  A student who is excused from PE may not participate in recess, intramurals, or interscholastic sports.

5661.30 HEALTH EDUCATION

CR 135.3 Health education. Education Law Article 17, Section 804/805

Health education in the elementary schools

The elementary school curriculum shall include a sequential health education program for all pupils, grades K-6. In the kindergarten and primary grades, Health education shall be taught by school nurse teachers, certified health educators, or the classroom teachers.

Health education in the secondary schools

The secondary school curriculum shall include health education as a constant for all pupils. An approved on-half year course is taught in middle school; approved one-half  and beginning with the class of 2021 one full credit course at senior high school grades; Health education shall be required for all pupils in middle and high school (grades 7 – 12) and shall be taught by teachers holding a certificate to teach health.

Health Coordinator

A member of the health department with approved preparation shall be designated as health coordinator(s). The health coordinators shall insure that related school courses are conducted in a manner supportive of health education, and provide for cooperation with community agencies and use of community resources necessary for achieving a complete school – community health education program

NYS Standards for Learning in Health Education

Standard: Personal Health and Fitness Students will have the necessary knowledge and skills to establish and maintain physical fitness, participate in physical activity, and maintain personal health.
Standard: A Safe and Healthy Environment. Students will acquire the knowledge and ability necessary to create and maintain a safe and healthy environment.
Standard: Resource Management. Students will understand and be able to manage their personal and community resources.

HIV/AIDS INSTRUCTION (Formerly Policy 8211 – Prevention Instruction)

In compliance with the regulations of the Commissioner of Education, the district will provide classroom instruction concerning Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) as part of a sequential and comprehensive health program for all students, K-12. Instruction must be offered during regularly scheduled classes. AIDS instruction in the elementary grades shall be taught by school nurse teacher, certified health educator or the regular classroom teacher, while such instruction in the middle and high school grades shall be a part of the required health education curriculum. Such instruction will be age-appropriate, and include the following information:

  1. the nature of the disease;
  2. methods of transmission of the disease; and
  3. methods of prevention of the disease (stressing abstinence as the most effective and appropriate protection against AIDS).

A student may be excused from that segment of AIDS instruction regarding methods of prevention of the disease if his/her parent/guardian files a request with the Superintendent of Schools. The request must give assurance that such instruction will be given at home.

Mental Health

The Health Coordinators shall ensure that all health education curriculum include mental health with the relation to physical and mental health to enhance student understanding, attitudes and behaviors that promote health, wellbeing and human dignity.

CPR/AED instruction

Instruction in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and AED instruction shall be included as part of the health curriculum and is a requirement for graduation. Persons instructing students in CPR/AED shall possess a valid certification by a nationally recognized organization.

Substance Abuse – Prevention Instruction

The Board of Education recognizes the need to educate students on the hazards of alcohol, tobacco and/or drug abuse including, but not limited to heroin and opioids. An educationally sequential health prevention program, utilizing as appropriate community, staff and student input, will be developed to inform students of:

  • Causes for substance abuse;
  • Physical and psychological damage associated with substance abuse;
  • Avoidance of alcohol, tobacco and drugs;
  • Dangers of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Preventing or delaying alcohol, tobacco, drugs, and other substance use/abuse by students shall be the major focus of a comprehensive K through 12 program in which proactive measures of prevention and early intervention are emphasized. This program shall include:

  1. A sequential K through 12 curriculum-based on recognized principles of effectiveness that is developed and incorporated into the total educational process. This curriculum shall be concerned with education and prevention in all areas of alcohol, tobacco, drugs, and other substances use/abuse;
  2. Training school personnel and parents/guardians to reinforce the components of the policy through in-service and community education programs with up-to-date factual information and materials;
  3. An effort to provide positive alternatives to alcohol, tobacco, drugs, and other substances use/abuse through the promotion of drug/tobacco/alcohol-free special events, service projects and extracurricular activities that will develop and support a positive peer influence.

5661.40 FAMILY LIFE/SEXUAL HEALTH

The Board of Education believes that in order for students to develop the knowledge, skills and beliefs to be safe, healthy and achieve academically, grades K-12 comprehensive health education must include family life/sexual health education.  The goal of family life/sexual health (including sexual risk prevention) education is to provide students with the resources needed to make responsible, safe, healthy and well-informed decisions about their lives, health, relationships and well-being.

The Board recognizes that parents and families have primary responsibility in supporting their children’s sexual development, values and beliefs.  Education must respect, reinforce and support the role of parents.  The school’s role is to educate and supplement parent’s efforts in this area by providing medically accurate, age and developmentally appropriate, bias-free, sequential sexual health education that focuses on critical skills and functional knowledge and is evidenced and researched based.  Education shall encourage positive communication between students, parents and families about sexual health.  Grades K-12 sexual health education shall follow the best practices recommended in the New York State (NYS) Standards in Health Education, New York State Education Guidance Document for Achieving the NYS Standards in Health Education and the National Sexuality Education Standards.

In accordance with Commissioner’s Regulations (135.3), no student shall be required to receive instruction concerning the methods of prevention of sexual risk and HIV/AIDS if the parent or legal guardian of such student has filed a written request with the school principal that the student be excused from that specific instruction, with an assurance that the student will receive such instruction at home.  Such exclusions will not affect the student’s academic grade or any other educational outcome measures.

The following requirements shall apply to any courses dealing with family life/sexual health education offered by the district:

  1. All curricula and instructional materials will be available for review by parents and guardians throughout the school year and during school hours.
  2. Teachers who provide family life/sexual education will have professional preparation and ongoing quality professional development in the subject area.
  3. Sexual health education must respect and be inclusive of the diversity of beliefs represented in the community and meet the educational needs of all students.  Educational programs shall promote civility, interpersonal and inter-group respect among students and between students, staff and families, creating an inclusive school community, being bias-free, and sensitive to the experience of specific student populations, including, but not limited to, LGBTQ and pregnant and parenting students.  Education and programs shall promote a safe and supportive learning environment and prevent and prohibit conduct which is inconsistent with the district’s mission, the Dignity for All Students Act, and other State and Federal legislation.
  4. Sexual health education shall be accompanied by awareness of and sensitivity to beliefs, perspectives and responsibilities from Monroe-Woodbury’s cultural and religious communities.
  5. Comprehensive sexual health education lessons center on building communication skills that promote healthy relationships, reduce or avoid high risk behaviors, promote  abstinence from sexual intercourse as the most appropriate and effective way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV/AIDS, use appropriate  anatomical  terminology and includes scientifically accurate birth control methods, including, but not limited to condom use at an age/developmentally appropriate level.
  6. All students have the right to discuss and express their gender identity and expression openly and respectfully and to decide when, with whom, and how much information to share within a safe and supportive environment.
  7. The District shall ensure that all personally identifiable and medical information shall be kept confidential in accordance with applicable State, local and Federal privacy laws including but not limited to, transgender and gender nonconforming students, pregnant and parenting students.
  8. Outside community resources and individuals may be used to supplement and support the NYS Learning Standards and provide related services and resources for students and families with prior approval of the administration.  Programs may take a multifaceted approach by using a wide variety of agencies and resources, which represent the range of philosophies and beliefs within our community.

Subject to rules and regulations of the board of regents, a pupil may, consistent with the requirements of public education and public health, be excused from such study of health and hygiene as conflicts with the religion of his parents or guardian. Such conflict must be certified by a proper representative of their religion as defined by section two of the religious corporations law.

5661.50 COUNSELING, PSYCHOLOGICAL, AND SOCIAL SERVICES

(Formerly Policy 8230 – Guidance Program)

The Monroe-Woodbury School District shall maintain a comprehensive developmental school counseling/guidance program, for all students in kindergarten through grade 12. All students in grades kindergarten through twelve have access to a certified school counselor(s). The purpose of the program is to prepare students to participate effectively in their current and future educational programs as age appropriate.

For students in grade Kindergarten through grade 5, the program shall:

  • be designed by a certified school counselor in coordination with the teaching staff, and any appropriate pupil personnel service providers.
  • be designed for the purpose of preparing students to participate effectively in their current and future educational programs, to provide information related to college and careers, and to assist students who may exhibit challenges to academic success, including but not limited to attendance or behavioral concerns.
  • where appropriate, make a referral to a properly licensed professional and/or certified pupil personnel service provider, as appropriate, for more targeted supports.

For students in grade 6 through 12, the program shall:

  • allow for an annual individual progress review plan, which shall reflect each student’s educational progress and career plans.
  • for students with disabilities, be consistent with the student’s individualized education program.

The Monroe-Woodbury School District shall also maintain a district-wide and building-level comprehensive developmental school counseling/guidance plan which sets forth the manner in which the district shall comply with the requirements of Commissioner Regulation 100.2.

The guidance plan shall:

  • be developed by or under the direction of certified school counselor(s) and be updated annually, available for review at the district offices and each school building and made available on the district’s website.
  • be developed annually and shall include program objectives, activities, program development and maintenance planning, school counseling curriculum, professional development planning, evaluation methods based on data analysis of program results and closing the gap analysis reports to inform program improvement, and assessment of the resources necessary to support positive student outcomes.
  • include the preparation of a program outcomes report that includes an analysis of all systematic components of a comprehensive developmental school counseling/guidance program as defined by this subdivision. Such report shall be annually presented to the board of education.

Finally, the Monroe-Woodbury School District Each will maintain a comprehensive developmental school counseling/ guidance program advisory council to be comprised of representative stakeholders (such as parents, members of the board of education, school building and/or district leaders, community-based service providers, teachers, certified school counselors and other pupil personnel service providers in the district including school social workers and/or school psychologists). The advisory council shall meet no less than twice a year for the purpose of reviewing the comprehensive developmental school counseling/ guidance program plan and advising on the implementation of the school counseling/guidance program.

5661.60 STAFF WELLNESS

The Monroe-­Woodbury School District highly values the health and well­being of every staff member.

Implementation of activities and policies that support personal efforts by staff to maintain a healthy lifestyle will benefit each member in a positive manner.  Each building’s Healthy Schools Committee should develop, promote and oversee a multifaceted plan to promote staff health and wellness.  The plan should be based on the input solicited from the school staff and outline ways to encourage healthy eating, physical activity, and other elements of a healthy lifestyle among school staff.

Monroe-Woodbury Central School District

Title: NON-INSTRUCTIONAL OPERATIONS – Health and Wellness Policy
Code: 5661
Status: Active
Adopted: July 12, 2006
Last Revised: June 12, 2019
Last Reviewed: May 13, 2019
Prior Revised Dates: 10/10/2012