Eight Bristol schools are the first to receive the new Mayor's Healthy Schools Award, on 2 July. Aimed at encouraging pupils to lead healthier, fulfilled lives the 'Bristol Mayor's Award for Excellence as a Health Improving School' has been set up to celebrate schools that consistently demonstrate high standards in helping pupils understand how to improve their health and wellbeing.
The award is part of Bristol City Council's Healthy Schools Programme that encourages schools to promote healthier lifestyles and show children how to deal with situations and feelings positively.
As well as teaching children about healthy eating and how to grow and cook food, schools help pupils to:
To gain the award schools have demonstrated outstanding practice in promoting health and wellbeing in all aspects of school life. Bristol previously received Beacon Status in 2008 for Healthy Schools work under a national programme which has now finished.
Schools who received their certificate, plaque and banner are St Barnabas Primary School, Chester Park Junior, Southville Primary, Ashton Vale School, The Kingfisher School, Whitehall Primary, St Werburghs, Filton Avenue Infants and Hareclive Academy.
Results from the schools show an increase in eating fruit and vegetables, children reporting that they feel safer in school, pupils more active on the way to school, an increase in those having school dinners and a reduction in crisps and chocolate in packed lunches.
Mayor George Ferguson said:
"Bristol has a growing child population and one of our biggest challenges is addressing their needs. Lifestyle and habits formed in childhood can influence a person's health throughout their life.
"Our schools have an impressive track record of improving the health and wellbeing of our children so we have deliberately set the standard for the new award very high. I want a city where living healthy, happy and safe lives is the shared aspiration for every citizen. It's great to see Bristol schools rising to the challenge."
The Bristol Network for Equality in Early Years Health and Wellbeing Health Integration Team (BoNEE HIT) is looking at early years nutrition, health and wellbeing.