Wellness Council not doing very well for students

The District Wellness policy emphasizes that a lifestyle that includes good nutrition and physical activity is directly linked to better academic achievement, successful weight management, and positive self-esteem.” When the Wellness Council was formed two years ago, their goal was to help the students achieve a healthy lifestyle. However, what they have done does not meet their goal. One of the few successful accomplishments of the Wellness Council is Personal Wellness. Personal Wellness, a class that was added last year, is designed for students to maintain or improve to a healthy level of fitness zone. A physical education class that can challenge the students both in and out of class is doing something to promote a healthy lifestyle. Challenges include weekly goals of push-ups, sit-ups, and physical activity outside of class, and the end-of-semester personal wellness project, which requires students to create a wellness plan to improve fitness and also keep it going in the future. Now, even for regular physical education classes, they follow a stricter policy on make-ups so even when a student has an excused absence, they will be required to do a PE make-up. The most evident problems of the Wellness Council are related to food. After the school district changed its food service provider from Taher Inc. to Chartwells, the school also implemented healthier food choices. However, these healthier choices didn’t do much. A choice container of side salad or chef salad doesn’t provide enough for the students’ lunch. Something like a cheeseburger with tater tots costs the same and is much more filling. Healthier foods are rather expensive; milk costs 35 cents and a 10 oz. bottle of orange or apple juice costs $1.10. The council has also taken some steps by allowing only baked chips or diet soda, but many of the choices available still are not very healthy. There have been many controversies with fundraising in regards to healthy food at the high school. Band sold World’s Finest Chocolates along with salsa, which is supposedly a healthy option. Orchestra usually sells the chocolate before they go on Orchestra Tour, but they were turned down because they didn’t have a healthy option to go along with it. The Wellness Council only requires that there are healthy options available and it has gotten to a point where there are often things either labeled “healthy options” that really aren’t, or such as in student bake sales, fruits and vegetables that students rarely buy. This means healthy options are available, but not really an option that is ideal for the students. There are plenty of options that are very healthy in the cafeteria, but having food such as salad compete against hamburgers for teenagers doesn’t really give teenagers much of an option. The Wellness Council must help the students make a healthy choice, not just give them a healthy option.