School District of Crandon’s Wellness Success
Crandon’s focus on policy implementation has led to healthy habits for students and staff.
A CDC grant provided education, training and funding that assisted the School District of Crandon in creating a successful policy.
A wellness policy must be realistic and tailored to a district's unique characteristics to be implemented successfully.
Major Actions for Policy Change
External Grants. The School District of Crandon’s policy evolved over a three-year period. Receiving the CDC Wellness Improves Learning for Youth (WILY) grant enabled the district to utilize the school nurse to head policy change. The grant offered staff training that enhanced policy implementation.
Health Advocacy Council. Acknowledging roadblocks for its initial wellness committee, Crandon chose to revamp and create a Health Advocacy Council. The Council is broken into two sections. A school-based committee meets monthly and takes on the majority of implementation responsibilities. The whole council meets quarterly for oversight and input. The Council has a diverse membership and consists of individuals from inside the district including administration, the food service director, counselors, teachers, the nurse/wellness champion, parents and students. The Council also has members from outside the district, including representatives from local health care facilities, the county health department and Nicolet Area Technical College.
Overcoming Obstacles to Making Change
Crandon utilized a template to assist with policy revisions. However, the district recognized that in order to create a policy that would be implemented with fidelity, they would need to make changes to the template to create a policy fitting both the unique culture of the district and the resources available.
The WILY Grant assisted the district in overcoming obstacles, including scarce funds. The grant provided educational opportunities for staff that created stronger administration buy-in and community support. Creating a strong policy aided the district’s ability to maintain a wellness focus through administrative turnover.
The School District of Crandon created a realistic and honest policy by first identifying strengths and weaknesses within the district and then addressing those through policy revisions. The district updated a K-12 comprehensive health curriculum and created several tools for administrator assessment of wellness policy implementation.
Crandon’s implementation assessment in spring 2018 reported a 95% compliance with the updated policy. There has been a greater focus on health holistically. Students are drinking more water and the staff are more aware of the health curriculum and work to establish healthy habits in the classroom. Staff wellness has also been positively impacted.