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George W. Julian School 57 Recognized as One of America’s Healthiest Schools

George W. Julian School 57, a member of the Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) community, is among the 781 schools nationwide to be recognized as one of America’s Healthiest Schools.

Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a leading children’s health organization, honors these schools for supporting the health and well-being of students, staff, and families.

George Julian is one of 15 Indiana schools from seven school districts recognized for  2022-2023.

We’re honored to receive this national recognition for our dedication to supporting the well-being of students and staff,” said Andrew Bartolacci, the district lead teacher for physical education. “We remain steadfast in our commitment to fostering environments where all members of the school community can learn and thrive.”

He noted that George W. Julian prioritized healthy policies and practices amid numerous challenges facing schools today, including learning loss and declining youth mental health due to traumatic events, such as school shootings, vaping and nicotine addiction, curriculum changes, and school meal insecurity.

The school was able to sustain and promote good health by:

  • Providing a set, mandated physical education curriculum for all students.
  • Offering a fixed recess time each day, accompanied by staff members providing brain breaks to get students extra movement in class.
  • Providing accommodations and modifications for students of all health and physical abilities.
  • Developing and maintaining a health and wellness team.
  • Using its health and wellness policy to assess the school’s progress.

Kathy Langdon, the district’s physical education and health coach, noted the national award was made possible by adherence to the district-wide health and wellness policy, staff in individual schools leading such projects, and partnerships with various agencies, including JumpIN.

America’s Healthiest Schools remains one of the country’s longest-running, nationwide recognition programs honoring schools for achievements in supporting whole child health equity for students, teachers, and staff. Any school can connect with Healthier Generation to access training, resources, and technical assistance by visiting HealthierGeneration.org.

“This year, Healthier Generation continues to meet districts, schools, and educators where they are, recognizing it takes a considerable degree of effort to serve as a model of best practice in whole child health for students, teachers, staff, and community,” said Kathy Higgins, chief executive officer at Healthier Generation. “We commend America’s Healthiest Schools for demonstrating resilience and adaptability amid challenging times for our nation’s schools.”