Thursday, November 17, 2011
As Kansas schools fight to overcome budget cuts, private donations from corporate sponsors are keeping programs alive.
Cargil Cares presented a $20,000 check to Wichita Public Schools to provide a healthy eating education program for elementary students. The money will allow representatives from the Kansas Learning Center teach first through fourth grade students good nutrition.
“They're like a sponge,” said Brenda Sooter, Executive Director, Kansas Learning Center for Health. “This is the time to teach them about health.”
The partnership aims to increase access to health education programs for underprivileged children. Nearly 70-percent of elementary students in the district qualify for free and reduced lunches. Health officials said Kansas students are at risk for health problems without education.
“As they learn more about why they need to eat healthy foods, they can talk to their parents and make suggestions about smart food choices at home," said Karla Stenzel, Wichita Public Schools P.E. teaching specialist.
The health education project will begin in January 2012 and be provided by the Kansas Learning Center for Health.