Every day in our schools, teachers are doing extraordinary work to build a healthier future for their students and communities.
Teachers are collaborators, caregivers, coaches, instructors, advocates and all-around superstars. They educate, innovate, encourage and support.
At Kaiser Permanente, we know how important teachers are to our communities – and that their impact extends far beyond the boundaries of the classroom. Kaiser Permanente has been working to promote health and wellness in schools for more than 25 years.
We are committed to improving the health of our members and the communities we serve. We know that the health of teachers is vital to improving the overall health of these members and their communities. Teachers create positive change in the communities where our members live, work and play.
We know how important teachers are and we believe we are the best place for teachers to get health care. Learn more here. http://k-p.li/2gFQBwn
Thriving Schools is Kaiser Permanente’s comprehensive effort to create a culture of health and wellness for students, staff and teachers in K-12 schools by leveraging resources from several of our departments including Marketing, Sales, and Business Development, Workforce Health, and Community Health. When it began, the program promoted healthy eating and active living in schools, and has since expanded to also support mental health and wellness for staff, teachers and students as well as career-college readiness for all students. As a national effort with partnerships extending across the country, Kaiser Permanente Thriving Schools seeks to impact health in schools on a broad scale while addressing high priority health needs in the specific communities where we operate.
Evidence indicates that healthy students do better on all levels of academic achievement: academic performance, education, classroom behavior, and cognitive skills and attitudes. A healthy school workplace also helps retain teachers and staff, reduces stress, boosts job satisfaction and supports employees to perform at their best.
Thriving Schools in the Mid-Atlantic States
Here are just a few of the other ways Kaiser Permanente of the Mid-Atlantic States is taking action:
Thriving Schools Mini-Grants in Prince Georges County Public Schools: In the fall of 2017, Kaiser Permanente announced a pilot program in partnership with Prince George’s County Public Schools offering “mini-grants” for projects to promote teacher and staff wellness. This innovative approach provided a total of more than $60,000 to 25 schools. These mini-grants funded programs to increase access to healthy foods and beverages, increase opportunity for physical activity and offer stress management and relaxation tools for more than 1,900 teachers, administrators, and staff.
As part of our effort help keep Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) students healthy and ensure their educational opportunity, Kaiser Permanente is partnering with PGCPS to provide a back to school immunization clinic. Not only are these vaccinations important for students’ health now, but they also ensure that students do not miss school. Educational opportunity is one of the key predictors of long-term health, so this is an investment in these students for the future.
Teacher Wellness Grants: Last school year, we launched a Thriving Schools Minigrants program that provided funding to 25 schools for projects supporting teacher and staff health. More than 1,900 PGCPS employees benefited from this program. This program provides fitness equipment, healthy eating and active lifestyle programs, and other resources to local schools to make healthy choices easier for busy school staff.
The 25 projects that were selected will reach more than 1.900 teachers, administrators, and staff. These grants will increase access to healthy foods and beverages and provide ways for staff to incorporate physical activity into their day. Many of these grant-funded projects will also support behavioral health through stress management and relaxation tools. Learn about a project made possible by these grants – a WOW Center. https://k-p.li/2HQtYRQ
This year, we are expanding the program to many more local school systems.
Additional Resources for teachers and school employees:
- Students achieve more when teachers are relaxed and healthy. Thank a teacher in your school by sharing the #TeachersTake5 resources. https://k-p.li/2mbXhEF
- In schools, better health boosts educational success and educational success leads to better lifelong health, employment, earning potential, and self-confidence. Learn about our Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) program for teachers and students. https://k-p.li/2HxvRXB
- Teachers and parents who wish to practice mindfulness with children should have a good understanding of the practice before they can teach others. Because mindfulness is experiential, those who want to teach should first have their own mindfulness practice. http://k-p.li/2xPXP7p