Congress recognized that schools play a critical role in promoting student health, preventing childhood obesity, and combating problems associated with poor nutrition and physical inactivity. To formalize and encourage this role, Congress passed a law (P.L. 108 - 265). Each local educational agency participating in a program authorized by the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1751 et seq) or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (42 U.S.C. 1771 et seq)
shall establish a local school wellness policy by School Year 2006.
The legislation placed the responsibility of developing a wellness policy at the
local level so individual needs of each district can be addressed. According to the requirements for the Local Wellness Policy, school districts must set goals for nutrition education, physical activity, campus food provision, and other school-based activities designed to promote student wellness. Additionally, districts are required to involve a broad group of individuals in policy development and to have a plan for measuring policy implementation.
USDA is working with the Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH) of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools of the Department of Education (ED) to review and compile these web-based resources.
Joint letters signed and endorsed by the three federal agencies were sent to the chief state school officers and district superintendents explaining the requirements of local wellness policies.
Section 204 of the
Kids Act of 2010
(Public Law 111-296)
expands the scope of
brings in additional
stakeholders in its
review; and requires
public updates on the
implementation of the
wellness policies. View
Policy to help
meet the current