Craig Wilson, JD, MPA
Director, Health Policy
Healthy Active Arkansas
Drew Central School District
Obesity causes or exacerbates numerous chronic diseases and conditions that can lead to death, including diabetes and hypertension. In an effort to address the obesity epidemic in Arkansas, the governor-led Healthy Active Arkansas (HAA) initiative was launched to provide a 10-year framework with phased goals to increase the percentage of Arkansans who are at a healthy weight. As part of this initiative, and supported by funding from the Blue & You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas, the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement (ACHI) convened 10 meetings in 2017 and 2018 to engage, recruit, and activate a network of local champions to assist in meeting these goals.
This study, featuring Drew Central School District’s unique school-based nutrition and physical activity programs, is part of a series of case studies highlighting success stories from the HAA Statewide Learning Network.
Drew Central School District has taken many steps to move it’s schools in a healthier direction including:
- Emphasizing healthier options in school cafeterias by adding salad bars;
- Acquiring better playground equipment to enhance physical activity; and
- Developing an employee wellness challenge to increase the amount of physical activity for teachers and staff during school hours.