251764 An Integrated Approach to Improving Access to Healthy Food Options throughout the Nashville Public School System

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 9:30 AM

Celia Larson, PhD , Director of Evaluation for Population Health, Metro Public Health Department, Nashville, TN
Alisa R. Haushalter, DNP, RN , Director of Population Health, Metro Public Health Department, Nashville, TN
The Nashville framework to improve access to healthy food and beverage options in Metro Schools, district wide, includes: a) strengthening public, private partnerships that incorporate community participation; b) management of nutrition programming that is supported by an evaluation process; c) capacity building among youth, parents and staff; and d) innovative approaches to support sustainability. Metro Public Health Department has strong ties with the Metro School System developed through the Coordinated School Health Program (a system designed to connect health-physical, emotional and social with education), Alignment Nashville (a coalition of community organizations that work together to align community efforts that support student achievement) and Community Food Advocates (a not for profit organization devoted to creating a healthy, just, and sustainable food system). Working together with a common vision has facilitated the process of increasing availability of healthy foods as well as transforming the school environment to a culture of wellness. Specific CPPW strategies encompass: a) using data for decision making, b) centralizing processes to assure equitable impact of positive changes; c) developing a model for system wide school gardens that promote and utilize neighborhood participation, d) implementing strategies that build youth leadership and provide a structure for youth advocacy, e) evaluation of the school's food system and f) creating platforms for disseminating information community wide. This multi-pronged integrated approach will serve to increase community capacity, address sustainability, and assure a process for testing and implementing innovative strategies. Barriers and successes will be discussed.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
1.Describe the benefits of public, private partnerships to facilitate nutrition improvement in schools. 2.Identify two barriers to facilitating policy changes in schools 3.Name two methods that garner support for policy changes in schools

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been involved in the development, implementation and evaluation of the initiative.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.