Schools and child care providers have an enormous opportunity to improve both student health and learning.
Yet many lack the tools, motivation and programs that would support physical activity and healthy eating—factors that lead to improved learning and better health among children across Minnesota.
Disparities are especially pronounced among students of color and those who live in poverty, are English Language Learners (ELL) and have special education status.
Through its funded projects, the Center for Prevention approaches the issue on multiple fronts, helping schools statewide create healthier environments for kids and learning.
- Our Safe Routes to School work helps communities establish safe walking and biking routes so students can have fun and get physical activity going to and from school.
- Through the Providers Choice pilot program, we support child care providers in serving healthy meals and snacks and providing opportunities for active play.
- By partnering with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, our Farm to School matching funds project helps K-12 school districts purchase cafeteria equipment they can use to prepare, cook, store and serve more fresh, locally purchased foods.
- Our Health-Learning Connection Pilot Projects in Minnesota middle and high schools aim to develop examples of schools from across the state that demonstrate how promoting healthy school environments supports school learning objectives—especially where there are educational inequities.
- Our support of the Dakota County Smart Choices program helped create sweeping, systemwide food and nutrition changes among six school districts located in Dakota County.