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Oklahoma Certified Healthy Schools


Thank you for visiting the Certified Healthy Schools information page, we’re glad you are interested in becoming an Oklahoma Certified Healthy School.  This page is intended to guide you through the application process.  In 2010, the “Oklahoma Certified Healthy Schools Act” was passed as a voluntary certification of schools that promote wellness, encourage healthy behaviors and establish safe and supportive environments. This legislation uses the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Coordinated School Health model as the framework for what healthy Oklahoma schools should look like. There are 8 components of Coordinated School Health and the application itself lists these components. For more information on this model please go to http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/cshp/.

There are three levels of certification to become a Certified Healthy School; Basic, Merit and Excellence.

  • Basic certification requires at least 2 criteria in each of the 8 components of coordinated school health
  • Merit certification requires at least 3 criteria in each of the 8 components of coordinated school health
  • Excellence certification requires at least 4 criteria in each of the 8 components of coordinated school health

Tips for Completing Applications
  • Print a copy of the criteria first for review.
  • The application should be completed by your school wellness team and reviewed and approved by the principal before submission.
  • Please check only the criteria that are fully in place.
  • Do not start the online application process until you are ready to complete and submit (you will not be able to save the application).
  • Before submitting the application be sure to print a copy for your records.
  • Submitted applications are final.
Print a copy of 2013 criteria for your review click here .

Federal and State Requirements for Schools

Before applying to become a Certified Healthy School you MUST be in compliance with the following federal policy on school wellness:
Public Law 111-296 known as the Healthy and Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 requires all public school districts participating in the federally funded Child Nutrition Program to develop, update, and implement a “wellness policy” to promote student health.
Before applying to become a Certified Healthy School you MUST be in compliance with the following state school mandates. In addition, to obtain excellent certification, your school must have a 24/7 Tobacco-free Schools Policy (*see note under HB 2529).
SB 1627 creates the Healthy & Fit School Advisory Committees in each school comprised of parents, local health care professionals and community leaders to study and make recommendations to their school principal regarding health, physical fitness, nutrition, health education and health services. SB 265 eliminates access to sugary drinks and snacks in elementary schools, except for special occasions.  In Middle Schools, SB 265 requires that only healthy choices, except diet soda, be accessible during the day, and limits access to sugary snacks and beverages to special occasions.  For high schools, the bill requires that healthy choices be offered.  SB 1785 requires the parent or guardian of each student enrolled in Kindergarten, 1st, and 3rd grades at a public school must provide proof that their student passed a vision screening exam within the last twelve months. SB 312 requires school districts provide physical education programs to all students, which may include athletics. In addition, elementary schools are required to provide instruction in physical education or exercise programs for students in full-day Kindergarten through Grade 5 for a minimum of 60 minutes per week. (Effective November, 2005).
SB 1186 increases the PE requirement from 60 minutes to 120 per week in grades K-5, with flexibility in the additional 60 minutes to include health and wellness education and a variety of means to increase student physical activity. (Effective November, 2009).
HB 1051 creates the Diabetes Management in Schools Act, requiring schools to develop diabetes medical management plans for students with diabetes.
HB 1476 mandates AIDS Prevention Education for students; provides procedures and requirements for such education. AIDS Prevention education shall be limited to the discussion of the disease AIDS, its spread and prevention. The education must be provided a minimum of once during the period from grade five through six; once during the period from grade seven through nine; and once during the period from grade ten through grade twelve.
HB 2239 states that the board of education of each school district shall adopt a policy on or before September 1, 2008, that permits the self-administration of inhaled asthma medication by a student for treatment of asthma and the self-administration of anaphylaxis medication by a student for the treatment of anaphylaxis.
SB 1876 requires the physical education curriculum shall be sequential, developmentally appropriate, and designed, implemented, and evaluated to enable students to develop the motor and self-management skills and knowledge necessary to participate in physical activity throughout life.  Each school district shall establish specific objectives and goals the district intends to accomplish through the physical education curriculum.
SB 1941 creates the School Bullying Prevention Act providing a comprehensive approach for Oklahoma public schools to create an environment free of unnecessary disruption which is conducive to the learning process by implementing policies for the prevention of harassment, intimidation, and bullying.
HB 2529 requires any educational facility in which children grades K-12 are educated shall prohibit smoking, the use of snuff, chewing tobacco or any other form of tobacco product in the buildings and on school grounds of the facility by all persons including, but not limited to, full-time, part-time, and contract employees, during the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., during school session, or when class or any program established for students is in session.
Compliance with HB 2529 should not be confused with the 24/7 Tobacco-free Schools Policy. One of the sub-components in Section 6 (Healthy and Safe School Environment) states that the school has written policies and enforcement of 24/7—24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When schools check this item they are indicating that their campus is tobacco free and totally prohibits the use of tobacco in any form, by any persons, at any place, any time (including non-school hours) while on school grounds and during school sponsored functions held on or off campus.
Before you complete the on-line application, please be sure you are in compliance with the state and federal school policies listed above.

Tools and Resources to Assist Your Schools

One tool that may be helpful to you as you complete the Certified Healthy Schools application is the School Health Index (SHI).  The SHI enables schools to identify strengths and weaknesses of health policies and programs.  It also enables schools to work toward developing an action plan to improve student health. This free tool will guide you in preparation to become a Certified Healthy School and can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/shi/index.htm. Two other tools developed by the CDC are known as the HECAT and the PECAT: The Health Education Curriculum Analysis Tool and the Physical Education Curriculum Analysis Tool. These assessment tools are designed to assist schools in an examination of health education curricula and physical education curricula. The tools help schools select or develop appropriate and effective health education curricula.
HealthTeacher is an online resource of health education tools including lessons, interactive presentations and additional resources to integrate into any classroom. Lessons are grade-specific, comprehensive and aligned with the National Health Education Standards. Lucas.hobbs@healthteacher.com or Kristi.hensley@healthteacher.com

The Alliance for a Healthier Generation Healthy Schools Program is another resource for schools. This program is a framework for developing a healthy school environment including the promotion of physical activity, healthy eating, employee wellness and student wellness. The program recommends that schools use a six-step building process for implementation. More information please contact Michelle Sweney can be found at michelle.sweney@healthiergeneration.org

The new Institute for Coordinated School Health, at the University of Central Oklahoma, provides trainings, resources, and expertise in regards to the Coordinated School Health Model for all schools in the state of Oklahoma. The health education and training Institute seeks to ensure that all students, teachers, and staff learn and work in a healthy school environment. For more information please contact Rachelle Franz at (405) 974-3414 or rfranz@uco.edu.

The application itself lists a variety of health promotion programs and surveys conducted in Oklahoma schools. For your convenience we are providing names of programs and website links.
Certified Healthy School Application Process

The application process for 2013 will open August 1st and close on November 1st with an awards ceremony scheduled for February 13, 2014. We’re excited that you have an interest in becoming an Oklahoma Certified Healthy School. Please remember that the Principal’s approval of this application indicates agreement and compliance with checked criteria.

For more information on Certified Healthy Schools, contact Kathy Payne at kpayne@health.ok.gov.

Incentives for Schools Districts

Individual schools will receive notification in early December that they have received either basic, merit or excellence certification. School Districts can apply for incentive grants if schools in their districts are recognized as Certified Healthy Schools. Individual school sites can also apply for incentive grants once their district approves the policies required by the Healthy Schools Incentive Grant criteria.  The application period for TSET’s Healthy Schools Incentive Grants begins Jan. 1, 2014.  To learn more about TSET’s incentive grants go to http://www.tset.ok.gov.


Become a Certified Healthy School

Applications are due November 1.