The U.S. Department of Education awarded $2.7 million to an Oklahoma City-based nonprofit group that works to promote healthy lifestyles among students, families and educators.
Schools for Healthy Lifestyles will use the three-year grant to support efforts to educate and encourage elementary students, teachers and families across the state to make healthy lifestyle choices. The grant is the largest received by the organization and is the largest funded in the state, officials with the group said.
The grant was one of 67 totaling $33 million awarded to local education agencies nationwide, including four in Oklahoma, officials said.
Schools for Healthy Lifestyles was founded in 1997 to help address the state’s declining health status. The organization serves 56 elementary schools and partners with 50 public and private health-related organizations.
Lindsi Lemons, spokeswoman for the group, said the organization received a similar three-year, $1.2 million grant from 2006-2009. Having more than twice as much grant money available will allow the group to expand the services it offers, Lemons said. The group plans to provide schools with new health curriculum materials and expand their evaluations of the schools they work with, she said.
“We will be able to support our schools with additional resources that we weren’t able to offer the first time around,” Lemons said.