February 2014 Edition                                                                             



Happy Heart Month from "Rochester's City Schools Got HEART!" This monthly e-newsletter includes health tips, training announcements, grant opportunities, updates, events, and a "School Spotlight" feature to showcase innovative school health initiatives. Our goal is to keep you well informed about school health resources, activities, and successes!          



February is Heart Month, so we are focusing on a heart health initiative. Million Hearts� is a national initiative that was launched by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes by 2017. Million Hearts� brings together communities, health systems, nonprofit organizations, federal agencies, and private-sector partners from across the country to fight heart disease and stroke. The Million Hearts� initiative focuses on the prevention of heart attacks and strokes through achieving excellence in the ABCS (Aspirin when appropriate, Blood pressure control, Cholesterol management, and Smoking cessation).


Our local community transformation grant (HEART) and other partners, such as the American Heart Association and the High Blood Pressure Collaborative, are implementing strategies to promote heart health in our community. During the month of February, the partnership will highlight the many heart health resources available to the community, such as web-based resources, community blood pressure kiosks, and a webinar on how to talk to your doctor about the "ABCS." To learn more about helpful resources for cardiovascular health, visit the following websitesWegman's Eat Well Live Well Campaign and American Heart Association, Rochester Chapter.



Through the Champions for Healthy Kids program, the General Mills Foundation will award 50 grants of $20,000 each to nonprofit organizations working to improve nutrition and physical fitness behaviors for youth. Launched in partnership with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation and the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, this has become a flagship program of the General Mills Foundation. The Champions for Health Kids program has helped nearly 1 million kids since its inception in 2002. The application period for this year began on February 1, 2014, with an application deadline of March 14, 2014. Visit the General Mills website for more grant information and an application form. Please bring this tremendous opportunity to the attention of your Principal. 



Parents: Believe it or not, it's time to start signing your children up for community sports in the spring and summer. Please find sports opportunities listed below and note the registration details on flyers:


1. Baseball: The Genesee Valley Little League is now accepting registrations for Spring and Summer Leagues for both girls and boys aged 5 to 10 years. Click here for the flyer. The registration deadline is March 15th.


2.  Basketball: Rochester Department of Recreation and Youth Services is now accepting registrations for a Spring city-wide Basketball League for both girls and boys aged 7-15 years.  Click here for the flyer. The registration deadline is February 15. 



Rochester City elementary students are getting W.I.S.E. (Well-physically, Intellectually, Socially and Emotionally) thanks to a new grade 4-6 elementary sexuality education initiative, called I'm WISE. The initiative is a partnership of the Rochester City School District, the Student Support Services Center of the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership and the Metro Council on Teen Potential.  I'm WISE includes a home, school, and community advisory council to guide and inform the initiative. It also includes a parent awareness and education program (Family Talk), a teacher professional development program, a grade 4-6 sexuality education curriculum, resource centers, and an evaluation. The initiative is part of Rochester's grade K-12 comprehensive health education program.


The primary goal of I'm WISE is to enhance healthy and respectful communication between 4th, 5th and 6th grade students and their parents, trusted adults and peers in relation to sexuality, their bodies growing and changing, and healthy and safe relationships.  It was also designed to enhance student knowledge and skills in planning and goal setting, relationship building, abstinence and pregnancy, STD and HIV education and prevention.


Learning For Action (LFA) has been evaluating I'm WISE using both student and teacher pre-post surveys.  The evaluation demonstrates that students have increased their knowledge about abstinence, sexuality and making safe and healthy choices.  Students increased their beliefs on the importance of abstinence until adulthood and have demonstrated an increased ability to communicate with caring adults, including parents and teachers, about sexuality.  In addition, students demonstrated improved respectful communication skills with peers.  Students also demonstrated increased planning and goal setting skills related to sexual health and an increased ability to talk with their parents about their plans and gain support for achieving them.


The I'm WISE evaluation data is very promising! It is demonstrating that I'm WISE is moving student knowledge, skills and behavior, parent /child communication in a positive direction that will impact on student success.


For more information please contact Carlos Cotto or Audrey Korokeyi at Rochester City School District Central Office at 585-262-8205 or Kim McLaughlin at the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership's Student Support Services Center at 585-344-7574.



1. Let's Move!  

First Lady Michelle Obama has been a great advocate for promoting child health and

preventing childhood obesity. In 2010, she launched Let's Move!a comprehensive initiative dedicated to solving the challenge of childhood obesity within a generation, so that children born today will grow up healthier and able to pursue their dreams. Visit the Let's Move! website for great information, resources, and advocacy ideas. 


2. Healthy Children

Looking for a place to get accurate health information for your children? Check out the website for up-to-date guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics on child health topics for different ages and stages, healthy active living for families, safety and prevention, and much more.  



HEART stands for Health Engagement and Action for Rochester's Transformation.  It is the name of the five-year Community Transformation Grant awarded to the Rochester community by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help  promote health by making healthy living easier. The HEART grant was awarded to the University of Rochester Medical Center, Monroe County Department of Public Health and community partners:  Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency, Foodlink, the Rochester City School District, and the YMCA of Greater Rochester.   


To learn about HEART successes and community partners, visit our Facebook page. 


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