Oklahoma City (October 2, 2018) – Monroe Elementary School was honored Tuesday for its efforts to improve health for students, teachers and staff. The Oklahoma City elementary school received $3,000 through the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) Healthy Incentive Program for schools.
Monroe Elementary was eligible for a school site grant after the Oklahoma City Public School District approved a variety of policies and strategies to improve health and wellness at their 87 sites and was awarded a $50,000 grant in 2014.
Monroe Elementary has now earned a 1-star and a 2-star incentive grant. Monroe Elementary used the $3,000 grant to purchase an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED), and CPR equipment. AED’s are lifesaving equipment that can be used in the event of sudden cardiac arrest.
TSET Executive Director John Woods and Sharon Howard, incentive grant program manager, presented a check to Oklahoma City Public Schools board member, Rebecca Bud and School Superintendent Dr. Sean McDaniel. Monroe Elementary Principal Eric Meador, PE teacher Shannon Buck and the Health & Physical Education Coordinator Dawn Chernicky were recognized for their efforts to improve health at Monroe Elementary. TSET Healthy Living Program staff from the Oklahoma City-County Health Department were also on hand for the presentation.
The incentive grant criteria focus on strengthening wellness policies to improve school nutrition, increase physical activity, student wellbeing and provide tobacco-free environments for students, staff, faculty and families. These health-promoting practices and policies are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Incentive grant funds must be used for projects or programs to improve health.
“These grants recognize the efforts of schools that are actively promoting healthy lifestyles. Studies show that active, healthy kids perform better in school,” Woods said. “Habits formed early last a lifetime and we want to recognize schools that are making the healthy choice the easy choice for students, staff and the community.”
The TSET Healthy Living Program through the Oklahoma City-County Health Department serves Oklahoma County and works to prevent and reduce tobacco use and obesity by partnering with schools, community organizations, worksites, and local governments to promote healthy choices. The TSET Healthy Living Program staff collaborate with community champions across all sectors to make their counties a healthier place to live, learn, work, and play.
TSET was created by a constitutional amendment in 2000 as a long term strategy to improve health and ensure settlement payments from a 1998 multi-state lawsuit against the tobacco industry are used to improve the health of all Oklahomans. The funds are placed in an endowment to ensure a growing funding source for generations to come. Only the earnings from the endowment are used to fund grants and programs.
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The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) serves as a partner and bridge builder for organizations working towards shaping a healthier future for all Oklahomans. TSET provides leadership at the intersections of health by working across the state, by cultivating innovative and life-changing research, and by working across public and private sectors to develop, support, implement and evaluate creative strategies to take advantage of emerging opportunities to improve the public's health. TSET. Better Lives Through Better Health.