Altus Public Schools has taken advantage of new programs to help students succeed in academics, their health and physical well-being. One of the new programs implemented by the school’s Wellness Program is CATCH (Coordinated Approach to Child Health program).
CATCH is based on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s coordinated school health model in which eight components work to help students live a healthier lifestyle. The eight components are health education, physical education, health services, nutrition services, counseling and psychological services, healthy school environment, and health promotion for staff and family/community involvement.
APS Child Nutrition Program Director Sabina C. Garrett helped implement CATCH into all five Altus elementary schools. “Teachers, support staff, and administrators at each school are engaged and contribute in helping students make healthy choices,” said Garrett.
Physical activity is one of the eight components of the CATCH program. Will Rogers Elementary PE instructor Linn Marshall said the school has received curriculum, and PE equipment to promote fitness in all areas. Marshall said, “We have parachutes, balls, bean bags, games, jump ropes and other neat, durable equipment that can last for up to three or four years. My kids love it!”
As part of the program, the cafeteria support staff provides water or fat-free milk instead of sugar sweetened beverages for the kids, and parents are encouraged to devote 30 minutes or more to physical activity at home eat day.
“Altus Public Schools is positively and effectively helping students be academically successful, healthy and happy,” added Garrett.
Reach Mary O. Esparza at 580-482-1221, ext. 2077