BY LOUISE R. SHAW
Clipper Staff Writer
LAYTON – The health training Davis School District educators received last Thursday was not just to keep them healthy, though that was an important part of it.
It was also to help them take the knowledge of healthy lifestyles to teachers and students in classrooms, from where it might even go into homes.
“The concepts are not going to end here,” said Chris Williams, community relations director for the district. “We know sometimes kids are the best ambassadors.”
Williams recalled his own experience years ago, when he successfully challenged his father to stop smoking.
“Sometimes it has to happen with the younger generation and if that’s the way it is, it’s great for all of us,” he said.
Principals, vice principals, department directors and curriculum staff attended the day-long “Davis Moves” at the Davis Conference Center.
It was the first time an entire day had been dedicated to health issues.
“This is to help our employees become aware of any health issues that they might have and take steps to improve their quality of life,” said John Robison, healthy lifestyles supervisor for the district. “It is also to make us healthier as a district so we can lower our health costs and insurance premiums.”
Morning speakers covered topics such as personal resilience, cancer screening and quality of life. In the afternoon, participants visited booths to learn more about dietetics, receive a massage, hear about the benefits of travel or have their body-mass index measured and their eyes tested.
Those who attended learned about the need to reduce stress, drink more water, walk more miles and be more active in general, whether that meant working in the garden, playing with grandchldren or “just moving,” said Robison.
Marilyn Hales, principal at South Weber Elementary, said the workshops were a great reminder of the need to set goals for health choices.
“We should be working on these things all the time and lead by example,” she said, “especially as we watch the obesity rates rise.”
At one table, participants appeared shocked at the visual of how much sugar was in each drink or how much fat was in each hamburger.
“It’s an a-ha moment” for them, said dietitian Dana Gundersen of McKay-Dee Hospital. “Most say, ‘I had no idea.’”
A large collection of books, tapes, games and school supplies Р enough to fill two vans Р was donated by participants and will be given to children at the Huntsman Cancer Institute, said BryanBowles, district superintendent.