Paso Del Norte Health Foundation (PDNHF)
The Paso del Norte Health Foundation – Major Grants Program, is generously funding Get "HIP" Now. Working together with the Foundation, EPISD is improving student's health literacy and increasing their activity levels. The Health Initiative Project (HIP) will benefit over 43,000 k–8th grade students through an integrated health literacy program. In order to reinforce key health topics throughout the day, an integrated health curriculum is being implemented into the classroom through core subject areas (math, language arts, social studies, and science), and physical education. Included in the health curriculum are activities and lessons designed for the campus guidance, health, nutrition, and administrative professionals. To promote a strong school to home connection, bilingual activities aligned to the health topics are distributed. These lessons and activities compliment the classroom health instruction.
In addition, "Get HIP Now" is providing opportunities for students to be involved in moderate to vigorous physical activity before, during, and after school within structured activity zones and wellness centers. Studies have shown that if children do not develop competence and confidence in recreational activities during their school years, they seldom participate in recreational activities later in life. This "best practices" program provides students an opportunity to spend out-of-school and recess time engaged in recreational endeavors that promote moderate to vigorous physical activity, in a setting supervised by highly qualified teachers.
The grant project has also developed:
- a team of coordinated school health specialists to provide district personnel future professional development;
- a high-tech integrated curriculum platform; and,
- a comprehensive Quality Physical Education (QPE) Curriculum. QPE emphasizes health related fitness, physical competence, positive social behaviors, and cognitive understanding about physical activity. Our goal for EPISD students is for them to be able to develop and maintain a healthy and physically active lifestyle for life-long fitness.
As a result of the project, a comprehensive HIP report will be made available to the greater Paso del Norte Region. Leadership and infrastructure during the three years of the grant will provide for sustainability by the EPISD beginning with the 2011 – 2012 school year. "Get HIP Now" is designed to create systemic change. The outcomes produced and the methods used will lead to a change in behavior from students, families, and teachers.