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Nutrition ‘Going to School’

WHEELING — Students at four elementary schools in Ohio County will be learning about what is best to for them to eat with help from Wheeling Hospital’s dietician.

Dietician Jill Spangler addressed the Ohio County Board of Education Monday night, telling them about the “Nutrition Goes to School” program — which will involve Bethlehem, West Liberty, Steenrod and Woodsdale elementary schools.

The focus will be on the four elementary schools as other elementary schools in the country already have opportunities for nutrition education, she said.

Spangler is set to visit each school one time a month over the next nine months of the school year, providing students information about proper diet and exercise. There will be a 15 minute presentation on nutrition, followed by 15 minutes of physical exercise.

She commended the efforts of Ohio County Schools Child Nutrition Coordinator Renee Griffin.

“As a dietician at Wheeling Hospital, we want to be able to partner together to provide more information and more education for these children — particularly second, third and fourth grades. We’re looking at elementary schools.”

After fifth grade, the concept of proper nutrition isn’t as exciting to children, according to Spangler.

“We know nutrition is important,” she said. “Childhood obesity is an epidemic, and we want to do everything we can to educate these children. The best way to do is to partner with (the school district). … It’s just a perfect fit.”

In other matters, parent Amy Hutchison imformed the board of the “Summer Boot Camp Training” program for parents. The event is set for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Aug. 22 at the Ohio County Public Library. The focus will be on helping parents to “organize and mobilize” to better help local schools.

Thomas Wippenbeck, regional manager of architectural services for McKinley Architecture and Engineering, spoke on proposed designs for renovations at Wheeling Park High School. The presentation was similar to one he gave to school officials and WPHS personnel and students on Aug. 2.

There will be a number of back-to-school events scheduled for today in Ohio County Schools.

A freshman tailgate party is set for 4-7 p.m. at Wheeling Park High School, while Ritchie Elementary’s annual block party will take place from 1-3 p.m. An event for incoming Bridge Street Middle School sixth grade students will take place from 5-7 p.m.

The next meeting of the Ohio County Board of Education is set for 6 p.m. on Aug. 26 at the board office, 2203 National Road, Elm Grove.

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