November Healthy Schools - Healthy Students

Team Nutrition Iowa



DOE - Healthy Schools

This monthly newsletter is published in partnership with Iowa Team Nutrition and Iowa Partners: Action for Healthy Kids and provides information on nutrition and physical activity programs, upcoming school wellness trainings and funding opportunities, and success stories from Iowa schools working to support healthy habits in their students and staff.

Contact: Carrie Scheidel ( - Bureau of Nutrition and Health

Cruisin' at Crocker - "BEE" Your Best!

three girls at fun run

On October 27, Crocker Elementary in Ankeny held their first "Cruisin' at Crocker" Fun Run to serve as the annual school fundraiser. The event was held during the school day so all students and staff were able to participate. Each child was asked to collect donations from family and friends. The cross country style course was set up on the school grounds. Students had the option to run 1 or 2 miles.

Due to minimal expenses, the amount of money raised was nearly 3 times as much compared to previous fundraisers. It was a great day of school spirit and pride! Have you tried a fun run at your school?

Smarter Lunchroom Project with the University of Iowa

Muscatine food display

Students and child nutrition staff in five Iowa high schools were engaged through a collaborative process to assess areas of their lunchroom to make the healthy choice the easy choice. The project involved a partnership with Iowa Department of Education Bureau of Nutrition and Health and the University of Iowa Public Policy Center.

Results show there is a big difference between what students perceive is happening in the cafeteria and what adults see. Engaging students in the Smarter Lunchroom process is key to making needed changes to satisfy student taste preferences.

Infographic Showcasing Project Results  Student Survey Tool

This project was recently featured in a USDA Blog!

We want students to walk into a lunchroom where the healthy choice is the fun and easy choice, not the choice they have to think about. - Natoshia Askelson, University of Iowa

Share How Your School Promotes Breakfast

Midwest Dairy Council is hosting a contest that could earn schools $500 for showcasing how they promote school breakfast!  This contest will run from October 14, 2016 through November 18, 2016.  To be eligible for this experience schools must:

  • Be enrolled in Fuel Up to Play 60;
  • Fuel Up to Play 60 Student Team creates a video showcasing breakfast promotion;
  • Post to Instagram, Twitter, and/or Facebook using #FUTP60BreakfastRocks; and include the school name, city, and state.

Fuel Up to Play 60 is a program launched by National Dairy Council and the NFL that encourages students to eat healthy and stay physically active in their schools and communities. For more information, please contact Jen Ransom at 

$2,500 Fruit and Veggie Grants for Schools

Project Produce Logo

Chef Ann Foundation and Healthy Skoop are working together to help schools increase kids’ access to fresh fruits and vegetables and provide nutrition education through fun lunchroom learning activities.

The goals of Project Produce are to expand students’ palates and to increase their consumption of fresh produce. The $2,500 one-year grants support food costs to incorporate fruit and vegetable tastings into the school’s nutrition program.

There is no deadline. Grants will be determined on an ongoing basis depending on available funding. Apply today!

USDA Farm to School Visit - Nevada

Angela Tagtow, the Executive Director for the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion at the USDA in Washington, D.C. visited Nevada CSD to learn more about the Farm to School program that includes FFA students harvesting fruits and vegetables at Swanson Farms and incorporating them into school meals.  Kevin Cooper, FFA Advisor and David Schmitz, Nutrition Program Director led the tour.

Nevada Farm to School Visit

Iowa Student Visits the White House Garden

Olivia at White House

Olivia, 6th grade student from Waverly-Shellrock CSD, was one of two students in the nation chosen to go to the White House for the final harvest with Michelle Obama. Olivia was chosen to go because she presented her farm to school plan at the Fuel Up to Play 60 National Student Ambassador Summit and stood out among the students who were chosen to be a Farm to School Grant Winner.

White House Garden Harvest Blog


HealthierUS School Challenge Award Ceremony

Holy Family Award Ceremony

The HealthierUS School Challenge is a national certification initiative, sponsored by USDA that recognizes schools that are creating healthier school environments through good nutrition and physical activity.

St. Ludmila Center and St. Jude Center at Holy Family Schools in Cedar Rapids have worked hard to make changes to their school wellness environment. On October 14th they received their Bronze Level Awards and will each receive $500.

Congratulations St. Ludmila Center and St. Jude Center for receiving this prestigious award!

In Iowa, there are currently 72 schools that have received the HealthierUS School Challenge award.

Iowa Teacher of the Year's Celebratory Dance!

Teacher of the Year

On Friday, October 28, Shelly Vroegh of Lakewood Elementary School in Norwalk was selected as the 2017 Iowa Teacher of the Year. At the end of the ceremony she showed off her dance moves and got everyone moving including Governor Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds!

Watch the video!