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By COLLEEN MCCARTHY
In an effort to keep its students happy and healthy, Armstrong Middle School is offering a number of programs this year that focus on health issues.
â€śWe have organized a health council that consists of community leaders, students, faculty, staff and parents to discuss health issues and promotions,â€ť Missy Staggers, the AMS school nurse said. â€śHealthy eating is one component of that our Mississippi Department of Education Office of Healthy Schools recognizes will help students be productive. The Starkville School Districtâ€™s Nutrition Program provides menus that meet the meal patterns and nutrition standards established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. We want to take it a step further and help our students gain knowledge and skills to make nutritious food choices when they are not at school.â€ť
Yesterday, Oktibbeha County Extension Service representatives Frances Page and Sara Smith stopped by the school to talk to the students about maintaining a healthy diet. October is the United States Department of Agricultureâ€™s Push Your Fruits and Veggies month. The representatives spoke to the students about how they could increase the number of fruits and veggies they eat and the portion sizes they should have of each food group.
â€śWe will be working all year to help students be academic and healthy,â€ť Staggers said. â€śThe link between nutrition, physical activity and learning is well documented, and we recognize that a healthy student is an academic student. Our schools have made a commitment to be ongoing with helping our students learn ways to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle. We have programs, activities, and incentives planned for the school year. Our goal is for our students to be healthy and academic, and grow into healthy and productive adults.â€ť
On Monday, the Pink Heals Tourâ€™s pink fire trucks will stop by the school to help promote Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
In November, a former winner of NBCâ€™s â€śThe Biggest Loserâ€ť will stop by the school to speak to the students. Patrick House weighed 400 pounds when he first started the competition and went on to lose 181 pounds by the showâ€™s finale.