With the introduction of the School Food and Beverage Policy in September 2011, foods sold to students across Ontario schools have changed to healthier options. To support the promotion of healthier foods at school, Orillia’s Orchard Park Public School in Simcoe County District School Board has come up with some creative ideas.
The fresh fruit basket
Just outside the school office, students who go to Orchard Park have access to a basket full of fresh fruit. As students walk the hallways, apples, bananas and oranges are available as a free, healthy snack.
It has become such a popular treat that principal Sally Potts says that kids are eating up to three cases each week or about 70 pieces per day. This means that 15% of the 475 students are eating this sweet treat.
Grade 8 students say the fruit baskets have to be filled twice a day because they are very popular. The office and students are always willing to fill the baskets with fresh fruit throughout the day. The fruit basket also supports the local produce supplier Battaglia. Funding for this project is from the “Eat Well to Excel” program sponsored by the United Way of Greater Simcoe County.
Orchard Park Public School is making fruit an easy and delicious choice! The students at Orchard Park Public School deserve an “A” for their amazing effort!
And now the sequel!
Orchard Park has a new principal, but the healthy eating tradition continues. In March 2015, the school hosted a family-friendly Wellness Fair complete with a free buffet of meat and veggie wraps, fresh veggies with dip, and water decanted from recyclable jugs. All cups and napkins disappeared into handy compost pails, so cleanup was a snap as well as environmentally friendly. Displays at the fair included a “Glitterbug” hand washing station, and the interactive display called “How Much Sugar is in Your Drink?
For children and teens, healthy eating is important for healthy development and learning. Having nutritious food at school is a way to teach and encourage a healthy lifestyle.
Great job Orchard Park!
For more information, contact:
Eileen Wise, Principal, Orchard Park Public School firstname.lastname@example.org
Last Update – April 2, 2015