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Salud America! Guest Blogger
Denise Rosales, P.E. Teacher, Mission Collegiate High School, Mission, Texas
At Mission Collegiate High School, nestled on the Mexican border, we’re more than just a school.
We’re a close-knit family who believes that health is the foundation of life, so we take care of one another’s well-being.
Together, our 45 staff and 435 students helped Mission Collegiate earn a spot on the Alliance for Healthier Generation’s 2017 America’s Healthiest Schools list, for the second year in a row!
We’re particularly proud of our achievement because nearly 100 percent of our students are Hispanic and economically disadvantaged, and the majority are either first-generation high school or college students. Our staff understand the positive effect good health can have on academic achievements and lifelong success, which has encouraged us to constantly look for different ways to be a healthier family.
There have been no shortage of creative ideas from both staff and students. Together, we tackled big barriers to becoming healthy, such as the food fundraisers and lack of a school gym.
We banished the habit of selling food to raise money, instead hosting game nights and bike-a-thons that thrilled students and families.
We filled a large room with fitness equipment to serve as a gym and started a fitness club to give students and staff the chance to exercise together after school. The physical education classes are kept fresh by always adding variety, including new sports, such as archery and (Harry Potter’s) Quidditch, also popular with – and inspired by – students.
Since implementing healthy changes, we’ve noticed that students participate more in class, attend school more often, and test better.
We’ve also seen an increase in the number of students graduating with their associate’s degrees!
I’m so proud of all that we’ve accomplished, and especially proud of how our “family” came together to make it happen, from district leadership and school board members to parents, staff, and students. Our collective efforts have resulted in a school that was built from the inside to nurture the whole child, and one of which we’re all proud to be a part.
Whether you’re just getting started on determining your health and wellness goals or you’re looking to take it to the next level, the Alliance’s Healthy Schools Program is there to support and guide you.
Join our family in becoming one of America’s Healthiest Schools and enroll in the Healthy Schools Program today!