Journalism & Entertainment From Farmington High School

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Journalism & Entertainment From Farmington High School

BKTV Studios

Journalism & Entertainment From Farmington High School

BKTV Studios

MOSHAPE Award Recipient Helping the Health of Farmington

Farmington School District
Associate Superintendent, Dr. Ashley Krause, received the MOSHAPE Dr. Thomas J. Loughrey Advocacy Award for 2023! Learn more at fhsknightlife.com

When people think about education, they think about assessments, grades, and sports. The Farmington School District has taken a different approach, incorporating physical and mental wellness into the curriculum. This new approach was brought forth by the Farmington Administrative Team.

On Friday, December 1, 2023, Associate Superintendent with the Farmington School District, Dr. Ashley Krause, was awarded the MOSHAPE Dr. Thomas J. Loughrey Advocacy Award for 2023. Each year, advocates and members of quality health and physical education programs are awarded for their achievements in improving school wellness.

According to Krause, receiving this award means a lot to her, as the Farmington School District is on the “right track” to making improvements in physical education programs.

“Being a part of and being recognized by such a group of talented individuals from across the state of Missouri is inspiring,” Ashley explained. “FSD has only just begun its work in the area of health and wellness and we have many more milestones to achieve.”

Krause and the Health and Human Services Team at FSD have made tremendous efforts in “establishing priority curriculum standards.” When Krause first began to work with HHST members, she was acquainted with the ‘Whole School, Whole Community, and Whole Child’ model.

“The creation of the WSCC model was to move toward a more cohesive unit in education instead of siloing efforts in departmentalized containers, ” explained Krause. “Basically, we are all working toward the same efforts, so why not join together and row that boat forward in the same direction?”

A large portion of the physical education and wellness curriculum within the Farmington School District is driven by the wellness committee and the HHST, representing the “outer components of the WSCC model.”

“Our wellness committee is composed of 55-60 community members, agency workers, parents, students and staff members,” Ashley said. “This committee meets 3 times a year as well as additional meetings through subcommittee work. Our HHST is composed of social workers, school counselors, nurses, SRO’s, and the director of safety. Our HHST meets monthly. In each of these leadership groups we create overall priority goals which align with our Comprehensive School Improvement Plan.”

These priority goals are influenced by community needs and staff acknowledgement.

“Some of those needs are increased behavioral health supports and awareness as well as substance misuse supports,” Krause elucidated.
“To meet these goals we have worked to establish priority curriculum standards beginning in kindergarten, train our staff in trauma informed practices (elementary conscious discipline efforts), recognize the needs for integration of physical, mental and social well being, promoting a balance.”

Within the Farmington School District, the promotion of health and physical well-being is crucial.
Many students benefit from such promotions, as it is the job of staff members across the board to encourage healthy lifestyles.

The ‘Whole Child’ approach that the district has adopted is driven by the “positive effects on cognitive function, behavior and healthy lifestyle habits.”

FSD has gone above and beyond these last few years to ensure the health and well-being of students. With an increasingly effective focus on physical education, a balance of healthy habits is becoming more advanced. There is less of an emphasis on the competitive nature of physical education, and more goal setting and self improvement aspects.

The implementation of ‘heart-rate monitors’ is just one step in the right direction.

“We integrated heart rate monitors several years ago at the secondary level,” Ashley said. “We have most recently put heart rate monitors in the elementary campus beginning in grade 3. We are engaged in professional development in December to increase use of these valuable tools in the effort to motivate, engage and assess student activity in physical education.”

Movement is also being utilized in classrooms throughout the Farmington School District, supporting child development and the connection between learning and fitness.

Quality health standards have made a tremendous improvement at FSD within the past few years. Health courses offered at varying educational levels have been altered to fill in gaps in the curriculum.

“The health courses also focus on the priorities established by the wellness committee which are behavioral health/trauma as well as substance misuse,” Krause explained. “All of these areas are within the context and content of what health professionals address. We continue to bring in as many outside resources to support and connect this endeavor.”

What can staff and students do in their buildings to promote physical health? Well, according to Ashley, there are a number of things. Staff members with the district participate in ‘Wellness Wednesday’s,’ which is designed for staff to discuss the importance of self care both behaviorally and physically.

Conversations in classrooms between students and educators have also made a dramatic shift to more health-related topics such as screen time and healthy eating habits. Students are also participating in a variety of fun activities to promote health, such as field days, color runs, and outdoor learning.

“Fun activities such as field days, color runs and outside classrooms all have been integrated as FUN parts of students’ curricular experiences,” said Krause. “Extracurricular clubs which promote movement, making friends and creating healthy peer relations have also increased at the intermediate and middle school level. The options are endless.”

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Mady Washington, Journalism & TV Staff
Hobbies: Swimming, reading, writing, and Sudoku Spirit Animal: Owl Theme Song: I Wanna Be Yours by Arctic Monkeys Favorite Quote: “When they go low, we go high.” -First Lady and Author, Michelle Obama Someone I'm inspired by: Oprah

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