SETH — The 2012-13 school year is Program Advisor Nick Cabell’s first year with Fuel Up to Play 60. But don’t let that fool you! He’s already had great success. Nick learned about the program during a professional development session at West Virginia’s state department. . His principal, Todd Barnett, jumped on board to lend his support — and made Fuel Up to Play 60 part of a comprehensive and holistic wellness program at Sherman High.
Fuel Up to Play 60 dovetailed nicely with Sherman High’s holistic wellness program, which includes intramurals for physical activity. Nick implemented the Healthy Eating Play “Grab-n-Go Breakfast” with the help of his grab-n-go coordinator to address nutrition. Additionally, the West Virginia LINKS program was incorporated. LINKS focuses on character development and provides counseling to students.
Principal Barnett was particularly helpful with a scheduling change that was made to incorporate the “Grab-n-Go Breakfast” between the first and second block periods, and an additional 10 minutes were provided for students to take part. The timing of “Grab-n-Go” makes a big difference in participation rates, as now a time slot is available for all students in the school to get breakfast. Items were offered that could not be gotten during the school’s regular breakfast. These “quick” options include sausage biscuits, fruit, low-fat milk and juice. Students line up for the “Grab-n-Go” and head off to class.
Nick and his fellow supporters’ strategy worked! The early-session breakfast numbers were around 50, but with the addition of “Grab-n-Go,” over 200 students now eat breakfast – in a school population of just over 400. Sherman High has been recognized for its achievements. The state of West Virginia acknowledged the school for having the largest increase in breakfast participation. And the school’s success is spreading – Sherman Junior High school shares a cafeteria facility with the high school, and when the junior high principal saw the impact that “Grab-n-Go” had on the high school students, he began implementing it, too!
The payoff is being seen in Sherman’s students. Teachers have noted a decline in discipline issues, and school attendance has increased. In fact, Sherman boasts its highest attendance rate in years. Principal Barnett notes that when you meet students’ needs at the most basic level, students are affected in a positive way, both emotionally and cognitively.
Nick and his supporters might be just getting started, but he has a lot of ideas for moving forward. He is looking to build a broader team of students with his fellow PE and Health teacher. The intramurals will soon be turned over to a Fuel Up to Play 60 student leadership team, and taste tests will be implemented to build upon the success of the “Grab-n-Go.” If he receives Funds for Fuel Up to Play 60 this year, he would like to purchase blenders to create smoothies to add to the breakfast menu, and sports equipment to sustain the intramurals as part of the wellness program.
The story can be found online at http://school.fueluptoplay60.com/community/success-stories.php#36162634