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For Immediate Release: Aug. 10, 2007
Contact: Mary Stadick Smith - (605) 773-7228

Schools get $5,000 for commitment to student health

Three South Dakota schools and one school district have been selected as winners of Governor Rounds’ Healthy School Awards. Each will receive $5,000.

This year’s winners are Eureka Elementary School, Spearfish Middle School, Eureka High School, and Colman-Egan School District.

“Our world is filled with opportunities for kids to make unhealthy choices – chewing tobacco, drinking soda instead of milk, watching television instead of being physically active,” said Gov. Rounds. “These winning schools have made a commitment to their students’ health by creating an environment that promotes healthy behaviors through school policies, curriculum and instruction, and through staff role-modeling.”

Winning schools were chosen for their efforts in areas such as health education, physical education, family and community involvement, school-based nutrition programs, health services, healthy school environment, and counseling services.

Many of this year’s winners have instituted walking programs at their schools. Spearfish Middle School students walked the distance to Boston and celebrated with a tea party at the end of their journey. Eureka High School purchased a vending machine that offers only healthy snacks, and the school removed all pop from its vending machines.

The Governor’s Healthy School Awards provide recognition for leadership in the area of school health. Winners are chosen at four levels: elementary school, middle school/junior high, high school, and school district. In addition to the cash prize, winners receive a banner to display at their schools.

Finalists for the awards receive a plaque. This year’s finalists included Groton Elementary School, Madison Elementary School, Groton Middle School, Edison Middle School (Sioux Falls), Arlington School District and Brandon Valley School District.