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School-based policies and programs

Elementary school girl holding a tray filled with a healthy lunch in the school cafeteria.  

Next to families, the school has more influence on the lives of young people than any other social institution. Schools can improve the health and education of young people and prepare them to be healthy and productive adults. While it is understood that schools alone cannot be expected to address all student health issues, schools are in a unique position to reduce the burden of childhood obesity.

School based programs provide a focal point in which families, community organizations, businesses, health care workers and youth themselves can focus on the well-being of young people. Strong wellness policies are a key component of obesity prevention in schools. This combination of better student health education, more physical activity, good nutrition and community engagement will reduce the prevalence the childhood obesity in Alaska.

The PAN program is no longer funding school district grantees but we are committed to providing technical assistance to Alaskan school districts as they work to improve the nutrition and physical activity opportunities for their students. Resources can be found on the pages linked below. We also provide evaluation and support and technical assistance to the Department of Education and Early Development Child Nutrition Program in their 5-year (2018-2022) CDC cooperative agreement for school health: Improving Student Health and Academic Achievement Through Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Management of Chronic Conditions in Schools (DP18-1801).

Alaska Division of Public Health resources include:

Alaska Data Sources for school-based policies and programs

Our state government partners include:


Additional Partner Links Include:



For more information about the Physical Activity and Nutrition (PAN) unit in School settings, please email: Lauren Kelsey, MPH or call 907-69-8165

Webpage updated January 2020