July 8, 2018
The Florida Asthma Coalition recently gave Bronze awards to Medart Elementary School and Shadeville Elementary School. They were two of only 40 schools in the state to earn an “Asthma-Friendly School” Award for the 2017-2018 school year.
Asthma is one of the most common long-term diseases of children.
The Center for Disease Control defines an “Asthma-Friendly School” as one that effectively serves children with asthma, plus educates others about the disease.
In the 2017-2018 school year, Medart Elementary Principal Stan Ward and Shadeville Elementary Principal Nick Weaver embraced the idea of asthma education at no cost offered by the Florida Asthma Coalition.
Said Ward, “Our children’s physical well-being is essential to helping them be ready to learn.”
“If it encouraged our students to be healthier and to understand others who live with asthma, it was worth participating in,” added Weaver.
Weaver also credited SES Assistant Principal Frankie Harvey for organizing the asthma challenge at their school, encouraging the faculty, staff, and parents to join in on what students were learning in the classrooms and on the playing fields.
Tanya English, Executive Director of Exceptional Student Education and Student Services, is involved with student health issues and got the ball rolling. “We received an ‘Asthma in the Schools’ toolkit from the Florida Asthma Coalition in partnership with the Wakulla County Health Department and other entities across the state.”
An “Asthma-Friendly School” provides educational health services for students with asthma, ensuring that they take their medicines and learn to use them correctly. In addition, the school provides asthma education which increases awareness for all students, faculties, staff, and families.
The “Asthma-Friendly School” also provides a healthy environment to reduce asthma triggers. Plus, safe and enjoyable physical education activities are provided for students with asthma.
“Anytime we can educate our children about their health is important for increasing their success in the classroom and in life. Congratulations to Medart and Shadeville Elementary Schools for achieving this goal,” stated Superintendent Bobby Pearce.
According to the Florida Asthma Coalition, “The results of the hard work are a healthier student body, a reduction in chronic absenteeism and associated dropout rates. The impact of asthma education in schools can be lifesaving.”