Special Edition of the State Education Standard Highlights Education Policymakers' Role in Reversing the Childhood Obesity Epidemic

Oct 13, 2009, 08:30 ET from National Association of State Boards of Education

ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The new issue of The State Education Standard, the journal of the National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE), examines how education policymakers can best address childhood obesity in school settings. This edition includes new information and resources for state and district leaders to help them incorporate the new Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans throughout the school day, improve the school food environment and apply evidence-based recommendations for the implementation of local wellness policies. Articles in the journal also draw lessons from key national nutrition standards for foods sold outside of school meals and consider the unique needs of children in at-risk communities, among many other critical issues.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20091016/DC90501LOGO)

Even as more attention is being paid to the epidemic in the media, what has not changed is that nearly one-third of American children and adolescents are obese or overweight. State boards of education are at the nexus of student health and education policy, providing them with the opportunity to help children learn about healthy eating and physical activity practices, as well as providing a supportive school environment.

"Few dispute that childhood obesity and overweight are significant contributors to chronic health problems, such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases," said NASBE Executive Director Brenda Welburn. "The cost of developing and implementing obesity prevention policies in school settings now pales in comparison to the amount of money spent on treating these chronic conditions over time. Strong state-level education policy is essential to reversing the childhood obesity epidemic."

Publication of this edition of the Standard was made possible by a grant from Leadership for Healthy Communities, a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The Standard is available for download at www.nasbe.org. A four-issue subscription to the Standard is $35. Single copies are available for $10. Call (800) 220-5183 to order.

The National Association of State Boards of Education represents America's state and territorial boards of education. NASBE exists to strengthen State Boards as the preeminent educational policymaking bodies for citizens and students. For more, visit www.nasbe.org.

SOURCE National Association of State Boards of Education