Three Monett schools honored for dedication to keeping kids healthy

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A Southwest Missouri School District is honored for its dedication to keeping kids healthy. Three Monett schools were chosen for the alliance for a Healthy Generation National Healthy Schools Award.

It’s been several years in the making. In fact, two of the three school buildings won the award in the past.

But school administrators say while the awards are nice, the real victory comes from making a difference in the kids’ lives. And some of them, like kindergartners Jamie Rivas and Michael Albig, may not even realize the difference that’s being made. All they know is it’s fun.

“We are playing tag, and fox tail,” says Jamie Rivas.

And Jamie says it’s a great way to spend time with her friends.

“My friends are cool, because I play with them,” says Rivas.

And Monett School District wellness coordinator Alex Severs says making healthy living fun is a big part of getting the kids to buy in.

“We’re providing them some different fun opportunities, and they enjoy the opportunities,” says Alex Severs.

And that’s lead to Monett Elementary and Monett Middle School winning the award for the second year in a row. This year, both school’s were named to the silver award level.

Meanwhile, Central Park Elementary received the bronze award, marking the first time they’ve been honored. As nice as the awards are, severs says this is really about helping the kids develop life long habits.

“Us as adults, we start, and when we try to change habits later on it’s harder, but when you instill it to them at a young age, it’s just a normal practice to them, and we’re kind of hoping with these younger kids we just make it a normal practice,” says Alex Severs, Wellness Coordinator, Monett School District.

The award focuses on several areas, like physical activity and education. But they also have to give some attention to nutrition. And that’s an area michael albig really appreciates. He says his favorite food at the school is salad.

“Carrots and cheese and ranch,” says Michael Albig.

And he’s ready to take what he’s learned and use it to help inspire others to be healthy, just like him.
“Cause you’re supposed to, cause you’re supposed to eat salads, cause it’s healthy for you,” says Michael Albig.

The Monett School District also offers walking for students who want to show up a little early to class to get in some extra exercise, and monett elementary school even has it’s own school garden.

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