School Wellness Initiative
The Docs Adopt© School Health Initiative is a school-based obesity prevention model that impacts the health of school-aged children, their families, and school staff. This isa simple approach that motivates school districts and schools to create a culture of wellness using many existing and evidence-based programs and resources. The initiative aligns with the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child model which calls for integration between health and education. Participating schools utilize the School Wellness Checklist© tool (SWC) as a guide to implement and record wellness practices completed each year. The SWC includes seven categories of wellness: Getting Started, Nutrition, Physical Activity, Stress Management, Establishing a Wellness Culture, Employee Connections, and Sustainability. The items in these categories are assigned point values. Schools that achieve enough points on the SWC receive a monetary award to further their wellness projects. Schools compete with other schools in their district to see who can make the most wellness changes, and the highest scoring school in each district receives an additional monetary award as well as their name on their district wellness trophy. Examples of what schools use the wellness funds for are building a school garden, providing kinesthetic desks in classrooms, offering yoga instruction to students and staff, installing refillable water stations, providing additional recess and PE equipment, or purchasing incentives for students and staff for participating in healthy activities.