Health and Family Services Cabinet
PANTA Resource Available for Educators, Community Partners
Guide Addresses Key Points of Get Healthy Kentucky
The Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH) and the Department of Education have released the Physical Activity, Nutrition, Tobacco and Asthma (PANTA) School Resource Guide 2006, an essential classroom tool for instruction on health and wellness - fundamentals of Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Get Healthy Kentucky initiative.
Chronic diseases, conditions often brought on by poor eating and lifestyle habits, disable thousands of Kentuckians annually. The initiatives in this resource guide provide educators and community partners with tools to educate children and teens about healthier lifestyle choices – the core of Get Healthy Kentucky.
“The PANTA guide is a wonderful resource for Kentucky’s educators and a perfect way for us to spread the Get Healthy Kentucky message about the importance of living well and making healthy choices,” said Governor Fletcher. “Physical inactivity, obesity and chronic disease have become a major problem in Kentucky, particularly among our youth. With proper resources, like the PANTA guide, we can start reversing these trends.”
The PANTA School Resource Guide provides tools to strengthen and expand local school wellness policies, programs and practices that highlight the Coordinated School Health eight-component model that recognizes how health, wellness, environment and learning are related.
For example, the resource guide offers sample policies along with assessment and planning tools for tobacco and asthma education based on what is considered “best practices” by education officials. The guide also has information to assist school staff in creating healthy environments for all students by decreasing their exposure to secondhand smoke and educating staff and students about asthma.
Each section of the PANTA Resource Guide contains resources educators may use to locate even more information on each of the four subject areas as well as state and federal laws that pertain to these areas.
The PANTA addresses several issues related to health and wellness, including:
· Designing and planning policies and programs.
· Encouraging environmental change.
· Promoting the overall health of students, staff and the school community.
“The Departments for Public Health and Education are committed to improving the health status of not only our children and youth, but also the staff of school districts across the state,” said William Hacker, M.D., acting undersecretary for health and public health commissioner.
Hacker, along with Get Healthy Kentucky Executive Director Chris L. Corbin, encouraged school officials to utilize local resources, such as health departments, to aid in the implementation of PANTA recommendations.
“By working together we can educate future generations to treasure their health; we can give them the tools to better care for themselves and their families; and we can create communities where healthy lifestyles are the norm,” Corbin said.
Governor Fletcher designed Get Healthy Kentucky to educate and inspire Kentuckians to lead healthier, more active lifestyles. It was made possible by legislation passed by 2006 General Assembly and will include, among other initiatives, an interactive Web site where people of all ages can gather useful information about nutrition, physical activity and leading a healthy lifestyle.
Through the re-energized Get Healthy Kentucky effort, all Kentuckians will have a reliable, single source for nutrition, physical activity and tobacco cessation related tools and information. The program will also include a Governor’s Challenge program to engage individuals, families, business, schools, churches and other organizations to meet individualized physical activity goals and be recognized for their completion.
For more information about PANTA or to read a copy of the resource guide, visit the Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ Web site, http://chfs.ky.gov/dph/ach/cd/pantaguide.htm.