The Juvenile Department recognizes that childhood obesity has reached epidemic levels in Washington and throughout the country. Overweight children are at a higher risk for developing severe long-term health problems. However, research indicates that obesity and subsequent diseases are largely preventable through proper diet and regular physical activity.
The Juvenile Department understands it has a responsibility to provide proper nutrition and physical activity to children in its care and therefore supports increased emphasis on nutrition as well as physical activity to enhance the well-being of their residents.
Therefore, it is the policy of this department to:
Provide children with nutritious meals and snacks.
The Food Service Program shall provide all children with nutritious meals and snacks according to the nutritional standards required by state and federal guidelines. When practicable, the department shall use food commodities made available under the Federal Food Commodity Program for school menus.
Provide children opportunities for physical activity and developmentally appropriate exercise.
The Detention Program ensures that physical fitness and/or outdoor activity is a part of the children's daily regimen. Children are given a minimum of one hour of physical activity every day. Physical Education is also part of the school's daily program.
Provide children with accurate information/education related to these topics.
Children who eat well-balanced meals are more likely to be healthier and better apt to learn in the classroom. Nutrition information is integrated into Health/Science education and/or core curriculum (i.e. math, reading). Building Nutrition knowledge helps children make healthy eating and physical activity choices, and foster lifelong healthy living habits.