The Bellingham Public Schools Wellness Policy Advisory Group will review best practices, federal guidelines, and current district activities to propose adoption of a local school wellness policy. A wellness policy is intended to guide the efforts of a school district (or local educational agency, LEA) to establish a school environment that promotes students’ health, well-being, and ability to learn by supporting healthy eating and physical activity.


Basis for Establishment:

The Local School Wellness Policy requirement was established by the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004, and further strengthened by the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. It requires each local LEA participating in the National School Lunch Program and/or School Breakfast Program to develop a local school wellness policy that promotes the health of students and addresses the growing problem of childhood obesity. The responsibility for developing a local school wellness policy is placed at the local level so the unique needs of each school under the jurisdiction of the LEA can be addressed.

Local School Wellness Policy Implementation Under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010Summary of the Proposed Rule USDA June 2015


Decision-Making Process:

The team will review the regulations governing LEA wellness policies for every topic.  The Director of Wellness or a local expert will share best practices and two examples of wellness policies in the topic. Team members will review regulations, best practices and examples and email discussion topics to the Director of Wellness before the topic conversation.  Meetings will focus on a single wellness policy areas; Director of Wellness will draft proposed policy according to members’ recommendations.  Each meeting will begin with a review of the previous meetings’ topic; the group will use consensus voting rules to agree to proposed policies.


Plan of Work:

A team of 8-15 stakeholders will meet four times from March-June 2016 to research and write a proposed wellness policy and procedure recommendations.  Local School Wellness Policies must meet the requirements of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act, and address, at a minimum, goals for nutrition promotion and education, physical activity, and other school-based activities that promote student wellness; and include nutrition guidelines for all foods available on each school campus during the school day to promote student health and reduce childhood obesity.

The team will meet for 4 scheduled 2-hour meetings. Each meeting will focus on one area of the wellness policy, and allow time for revision of the previous section of the wellness policy and an introduction of the upcoming wellness policy section.

The team will propose a wellness policy and recommended procedures by July 2016.  In the fall of 2016, applications for a new, on-going Wellness Policy Standing Committee will be published.  That group will assess wellness policy & procedure implementation, meeting four times each year to examine a single wellness policy required subject area for each meeting (e.g, Fall 2016—Nutrition; Winter 2016—Nutrition Education; Spring 2017—Physical Activity; Summer 2017—School-based Activities that Promote Wellness, as defined in the wellness policy)


  • Chair: Director of Wellness, Jessica Sankey
  • Co-chair:  Analisa Ficklin, Principal
  • Tanya Rowe, BPS Exec Dir Communications & Community Relations
  • Mark Dalton, BPS Director of Food Services
  • Heidi Rodriguez, BPS Asst. Dir. of Food Services
  • Steve Wiley, BPS Counselor
  • Tanya Peckler, BPS Teacher
  • Alison Merz, BPS Teacher
  • Anne Welsh, Parent
  • Caroline Greer, BPS Teacher
  • Nikki Lockhart, BPS Teacher
  • Mary Anderson, Community Member
  • Brooke Larrabee, Community Member
  • Erica Lamson, Parent
  • Gail Knops, Parent
  • Sarah Simpson, BPS Homeless Liaison
  • Mea Tyas, BPS Food Services
  • Jaren Tilly, SHS Student
  • Kathy Tompson, Community Member

Section 9A(b)(3) of the NSLA, as amended, requires LEAs to allow parents, students, representatives of the school food authority, teachers of physical education, school health professionals, the school board, school administrators, and the general public to participate in the development, implementation, and periodic review and update of the local school wellness policy.  This proposed rule, at 210.30(d)(1), Community involvement, includes this requirement.  In addition, proposed 210.30(c)(4) would require each LEA to include in its written local school wellness policy, a plan for allowing the above-named individuals to participate in the development, implementation, and periodic review and update of the local school wellness policy.

Local School Wellness Policy Implementation Under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010

 Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service

7 CFR Parts 210 and 220, Federal Register Vol 79, No 38

Wednesday, February 26, 2014



The Wellness Policy Advisory Group is responsible for proposing a wellness policy and recommended procedures to the superintendent of Bellingham Public Schools.

The policy will include goals for nutrition promotion and education, physical activity, and other school based activities that promote student wellness; the policy will also address the marketing of foods and beverages on the school campus during the school day in a way that is consistent with the nutrition standards for Smart Snacks.

The policy proposal will include planning for periodic assessment of compliance and reporting on progress toward policy goals, as well as a communication plan making wellness policy implementation information available to the public on a periodic basis.



March 11 – 23: Publicize call for wellness policy team members

March 28: Select wellness policy team members; notify members and applicants

  • Acceptance letter includes expectations for team membership
  • First homework assignment: Physical Education



April 13, 3 to 5 p.m. 

April 21, 3 to 5 p.m. 

May 5, 3 to 5 p.m. 

May 19, 3 to 5 p.m.

June 8, 3 to 5 p.m.



Budget Implications:

It is possible that the policy will recommend increased funding in curricular, facility, or student activity areas to allow Bellingham Public Schools to be a leader in promoting student, staff and community health and wellness.