According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), establishing healthy behaviors during childhood is easier and more effective than trying to change unhealthy behaviors during adulthood. Academy 360 plays an influential role in promoting the health and safety of young people and helping them establish lifelong healthy behavior patterns. These healthy behaviors help students learn better!
The CDC recently expanded upon its Coordinated School Health (CSH) approach to now reflect 10 components within a new model called Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC). Read more below about how Academy 360 implements each WSCC component or read about our local wellness policy here – A360WellnessPolicy
Academy 360 has been awarded the Healthy Schools Champion Award from the Colorado Education Initiative!
Each week, Academy 360 students receive a Health Education lesson using Health Smart, a health education curriculum aligned to the Colorado Health Standards. Additionally, Academy 360 will expand its health education to both students and families with cooking and shopping classes, opportunities to plant and eat produce from the school garden, oral health education, and other programming as determined by the needs of the students.
Academy 360 surveys each family every year to understand their current medical needs so they can help make sure every child has medical coverage. Academy 360 provides well-child visits, oral examinations, vaccinations, and other preventative care services through a partnership with its school based health center (only four miles away) and through mobile healthcare available on campus. The school also provides a nurse one day a week for its small student population.
Students at Academy 360 participate in at least 60 minutes of physical activity daily, which is the daily recommendation of physical activity for children set by the Department of Health & Human Services. Academy 360 has 30 minute recess periods and students receive Physical Education four days a week.
Academy 360 offers a daily salad bar to students, which includes at least two fruits and two vegetable selections. In addition, the school is a part of Denver Public School’s Fresh Fruits & Vegetable Snack Program, which allows students to receive another serving of fruit or vegetable every afternoon. All adults in the building follow the students’ food policy and often eat the same lunch as their students! Through our partnership with Children’s Farms in Actions, students will learn about nutrition through the school garden — they will grow, cook, and eat what they have planted themselves which is a proven way to get children to try things unfamiliar to them. Learn more about our delicious food programs, including from an A360 family member – DPS’ Food & Nutrition Services
Academy 360 has a FULL-TIME School Psychologist AND Family Therapist to play an integral role in the school’s MTSS process, working with students one or one or in small group settings. In partnership with DU’s School of Social Work, two graduate students in social work supports students 20 hours a week. Additionally, the school keeps an updated resource guide of services for its families, including: mental health services, housing and food assistance, medical and dental services, childcare and more.
Academy 360 is moving into its own home during the 2015 summer. In designing the space, school leadership strategically created the space to reflect lots of natural light, views of trees and mountains, classroom colors best suited for learning, lots of small group meeting spaces to meet the individualized needs of students. Additionally, the Colorado Health Foundation has awarded the school a playground grant in which the students will design their own playground and gardens to enhance their physical environment and active spaces.
Academy 360’s teachers and staff model healthy behaviors and choices for each other and their students. The school supports employees through any behavior changes they seek to improve their own health. Additional staff wellness includes: following the students’ food policy (think water, healthy snacks, no junk food, etc.), participating in Wellness Wednesday, monthly wellness programming, and engaging in active staff retreats such as a ropes course and bowling.
Academy 360 has an open door policy with their families; teachers and leadership staff are in communication with families on a weekly to bi-weekly basis. In addition to quarterly family conferences, families are invited to several Presentations of Learning in which their student presents to them what they have been working on in their classroom. The school has an active Family Leadership Counsel (FLC) and hosts monthly family meetings, which is an open forum style conversation in which families can converse with members of leadership, ask questions, offer feedback, and more.
Academy 360 is a founding member of the Montbello Community Collective. The Collective seeks to build neighborhood partnerships through education and community programming to meet the needs of children and their families in the Montbello and Far Northeast communities – truly offering a wraparound services approach.
The following nonprofit organizations reside at Academy 360:
Each classroom has a daily morning Crew meeting to ground themselves as a community of learners and establish and building community connection. The school strives to foster an environment in which students respect one another, feel supported by teachers and administration, and learn in a classroom that is comfortable, engaging and empowers academic achievement and growth. Academy 360 seeks to teach students the skills necessary to become productive, happy, and independent citizens within a tightly knit community through the following evidence based curricula:
Random Acts of Kindness: https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/for-educators
Positive Discipline: https://www.positivediscipline.com/teachers
Zones of Regulation: https://www.zonesofregulation.com/schoolwide-implementation.html
Little Justice Leaders: https://littlejusticeleaders.com/about/
Mind Up: https://mindup.org/mindup-program/
Second Step: https://www.secondstep.org/elementary-school-curriculum/classroom-kits