In December 2016, the Kentucky Board of Education (KBE) approved the Alliance for a Healthier Generation's Healthy Schools Program (HSP) assessment as a tool that each school district may use to evaluate its nutrition and physical activity environment. KRS 158.856 and KRS 160.345 require an annual assessment tool and public reporting. This board approved action was in response to a recommendation by the Office of Education Accountability (OEA) as part of the Recess and Physical Education (K-5) Report, published in November 2015. The Healthy Schools Program is an evidenced-based approach that each school and district may use for compliance with KRS 158.856 and KRS 160.345. In October 2016, KDE issued updated guidance recommending the Healthy Schools Program assessment.
The Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s (the Alliance) Healthy Schools Program (HSP) helps to create and sustain healthy environments where students, especially those in greatest need, can learn more and flourish. HSP is an evidence-based initiative that creates sustainable healthy change in schools and has a proven, positive impact on student health.
The Healthy Schools Program Framework of Best Practices identifies specific criteria that define a healthy school environment. The framework is aligned to numerous characteristics of the PLCS Program Review in addition to being aligned to meeting the annual needs of school district reporting for the nutrition and physical activity report (KRS 158.845). The HSP process includes an assessment tool and a customized action plan, the Framework helps schools work towards the Alliance’s National Healthy Schools Award.
To earn the Award, schools must demonstrate implementation of specific best practices in each of the following modules that address school health:
- School Health and Safety Policies and Environment
- Health Education
- Physical Education and Other Physical Activity Programs
- Nutrition Services
- Health Promotion for Staff
- Family and Community Involvement