the Paso del Norte Health Foundation’s Healthy Eating and Active Living six-year grant award for approximately $666,000.
Martha Slocum, the DPS Director of Research and Funding, said the initial amount of the grant award is $166,520, and three similar amounts will be awarded in 18-month intervals.
Slocum said the funds will be used to pilot the Wildcat Wellness Project at all six elementary schools. She said program goals are to increase student health literacy and physical activities promoting lifelong healthy habits.
A Coordinated School Health Team will be established at each school site to collaborate with a new Wildcat Wellness Coordinator.
Phase One of the program will involve hiring that coordinator, designating a writing team and school-site representatives, establishing school teams and implementing the new health curriculum at the elementary schools.
Phase Two will include writing the curricula for grades 6-8, and Phase Three will bring the high school grades into the program.
The final phase will emphasize continued support of the K-12 program as well as evaluating and assessing the program.
Slocum said the new health curricula will be aligned with the New Mexico Common Core state standards and guidelines. The Wildcat Wellness Project will be overseen by Associate Superintendent Dana Irby and Slocum.