starting point is to assess the current nutrition environment of the school to identify strengths and weaknesses; (4) data are needed to document impact and change; and (5) change is a destination and a process. Adopting a nutrition policy does not guarantee it will be implemented; it will require ongoing attention.


The Alliance for a Healthier Generation is a nongovernmental program jointly founded by the William J. Clinton Foundation and the American Heart Association and sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to help schools provide a healthful environment for school-age children by assisting schools in setting and meeting standards for improving the health of children in schools. Focus areas include

  1. goals to improve the nutritional value of foods served;

  2. goals to increase physical activity during the school day and after school;

  3. goals for implementation of classroom lessons on healthy lifestyles; and

  4. programs for staff wellness.

The Alliance’s Guidelines for Competitive Foods for K–12 Schools, released in 2006, are shown in Appendix D.

Industry Initiatives

The food and beverage industries historically have opposed federal or state school nutrition legislation that restricts access to certain foods and beverages, emphasizing that a healthy diet can include all foods and beverages in moderation (HPTS, 2006). However, in the past year, the beverage industry has recognized that it has a role in preventing childhood obesity (HPTS, 2005b). The food and beverage industry has the opportunity to reformulate products and develop new ones to comply with standards.

Steps Toward Improving the Nutritional Value of Foods

In August 2005, in response to growing pressure from parents and public health advocates, the American Beverage Association (ABA) announced a new voluntary school vending policy. ABA asked the beverage industry and school districts to implement the following guidelines: (1) provide only water and 100-percent juice to elementary schools; (2) provide only nutritious and/or lower calorie beverages such as water, 100-percent juice, sports

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