School Wellness Plan


Chester Community Unit School District 139

Adopted February 18, 2016

Wellness Policy.pdf



The Board of Education of Chester Community Unit School District 139 is committed to providing a learning environment that supports and promotes wellness, good nutrition, and an active lifestyle and recognizes the positive relationship between good nutrition, physical activity and the capacity of students to develop and learn. The entire school environment shall be aligned with healthy school goals to positively influence students’ beliefs and habits and promote health and wellness, good nutrition and regular physical activity. In addition, school staff shall be encouraged to model healthy eating and physical activity as a valuable part of daily life.




The purpose of this plan is to ensure a total school environment that promotes and supports student health and wellness, helps to reduce childhood obesity and meets the requirements of the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 and the Illinois School Code, including, without limitation, goals for nutrition education, physical activity and other school-based activities designed to promote student wellness; nutrition guidelines for all foods available during the school day; a plan for measuring implementation including designating one or more persons charged with operational responsibility; and involving parents, students, school food service providers, the school board, school administrators, and the public in developing this plan.




A disturbing number of children are inactive and do not eat well. The result is an alarming 16 percent of children and adolescents are overweight – a three-fold increase since 1980. Congress passed the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 on June 30, 2004.  Recognizing the role schools can play in health promotion; this law requires local education agencies participating in a program authorized by the National School Lunch Act or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 to develop a local wellness plan. The objectives of the wellness plan are to improve the school nutrition environment, promote student health and reduce childhood obesity. In addition, Public Act 094-0199 amends the Illinois School Code, requiring the Illinois State Board of Education to establish a state goal that all districts have a wellness plan.


The link between nutrition and learning is well documented. Healthy eating patterns are essential for students to achieve their full academic potential, full physical and mental growth and lifelong health and well-being. Healthy eating is demonstrably linked to reduced risk for mortality and development of many chronic diseases. Schools and school communities have a responsibility to help students acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to establish and maintain lifelong healthy eating patterns. Well-planned and well-implemented wellness programs have been shown to positively influence children’s health.


Schools also have a responsibility to help students establish and maintain lifelong habits of being physically active. According to the U.S. Surgeon General, regular physical activity is one of the most important things people can do to maintain and improve their physical health, mental health, and overall well-being. Regular physical activity reduces the risk of premature death in general and of heart disease, high blood pressure, colon cancer, and diabetes.


This plan is divided into four categories.


Setting Nutrition Education Goals:



Students in K-12 will be knowledgeable concerning nutrition and its importance in their lives.


Action Plan 1

  • Students in grades pre-K-12 receive nutrition education that is interactive and teaches the skills they need to adopt healthy eating behaviors.

  • Nutrition education is offered in the school dining room as well as in the classroom, with coordination between the foodservice staff and teachers.

  • Students receive consistent nutrition messages throughout schools, classrooms, cafeterias, homes, community and media

  • District health education curriculum standards and guidelines include both nutrition and physical education.

  • Nutrition is integrated into the health education or core curricula (e.g., math, science, language arts).

  • Schools link nutrition education activities with the coordinated school health program.

  • Staff who provide nutrition education have appropriate training.


    Setting Physical Activity Goals:



    Recess should be offered before lunch or at a time that is different than lunch time.


    Action Plan 1

    Careful consideration of the school lunch environment shall be taken into account when scheduling recess. It is encouraged that schools provide recess before lunch or at a different time than lunch at all appropriate sites.


    Establishing Nutrition Standards for all Foods Available in School Building during the School Day:



    School staff should rarely use food as a reward and never withhold food as a punishment.


    Action Plan 1

    School staff shall use food as a reward for student accomplishment sparingly during the school day. The withholding of food as punishment for students is prohibited. For example, restricting a child’s selection of flavored milk due to misbehavior in the classroom



    Prohibits student accessible vending machines in elementary schools


    Action Plan 1

    Beginning with the 2006-2007 school year, every school district shall: prohibit, for elementary school students, in-school access to vending machines offering food and beverages.



    Highly qualified Food Service Director and Cafeteria Staff


    Action Plan 1

    Dining room staff shall receive training in maintaining a safe, orderly, and pleasant eating environment. All food service personnel shall have adequate pre-service training and must hold a State issued or equivalent training certificate.


    Setting Goals for Other School-Based Activities Designed to Promote Student Wellness:



    Provide Elementary Students with a Walking Program during Recess.


    Action Plan 1

    Students will participate in a walking program that is designed to increase the student’s activity level during lunch recess. 



    Provide K-12 Students a food service program to ensure that all students have affordable access to the varied and nutritious foods.


    Action Plan 1

    It is acknowledged that the feeding of children is primarily a family responsibility. To supplement their efforts, every school shall operate a food service program to ensure that all students have affordable access to the varied and nutritious foods they need to stay healthy and learn well. During each school day the food service program shall offer lunch under the nutritional guidelines of the USDA’s National School Lunch and Breakfast Program. Each school shall encourage all students to participate in meal opportunities. In particular, the school shall make efforts to ensure that families are aware of need-based programs for free or reduced-price meals and those eligible families are encouraged to apply. The program shall maintain the confidentiality of students and families applying for or receiving free or reduced-price meals.


    Setting Goals for Measurement and Evaluation:

  • The district superintendent shall be charged with the operational responsibility for ensuring that each school meets the local wellness plan requirements.

  • The district superintendent shall appoint a district wellness team/council that includes parents, students, and representatives of the school food authority, the school board, school administrators, and the public to oversee development, implementation and evaluation of the wellness plan. In addition, it is recommended that the district superintendent also appoints teachers (including preschool – grade 12, family and consumer science, physical education and health educators) and health professionals (school nurse, physician, dietitian, etc.) as members of the team/council.

  • The terms of district wellness team/council members shall be staggered for continuity. 

  • The appointed district wellness team/council shall be responsible for:

    • creating and maintaining bylaws for operation;

    • assessment of the current school environment;

    • development of a wellness plan;

    • presenting the wellness plan to the school board for approval;

    • measuring the implementation of the wellness plan; and

    • recommending revision of the plan, as necessary.

  • The principal of each building shall be responsible for implementation of the local wellness plan and shall appoint a school-based evaluation team to develop and implement an annual evaluation plan.

  • The school-based evaluation team shall evaluate plan implementation and identify areas for improvement. The evaluation team shall report their findings to the building principal and develop with him/her a plan of action for improvement, as needed.

  • The wellness team/council shall hear reports from each building group annually.

  • Before the end of each school year the wellness team/council shall recommend to the district superintendent any revisions to the plan it deems necessary.

  • The wellness team/council shall report to the superintendent and school board annually on the progress of the wellness team/council and the status of compliance by the schools.

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