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Gold award for primary school championing healthy living

Pupils at a Walthamstow primary have shown they have the Midas touch after helping their school become only the second in the borough to achieve a Healthy Schools London gold award.



To celebrate the achievement, a special assembly was held at Thorpe Hall Primary School, in Hale End Road, on 27 March, at which British sprinter and local sporting hero Reece Prescod congratulated young people for their hard work.



As well as answering questions from pupils about his own training regime and eating habits, Reece was joined by Cllr Grace Williams, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, to present the school with a special certificate to mark its gold award success.



The Healthy Schools London programme, which is supported and managed locally by the Council’s Public Health team, sees schools given bronze, silver or gold awards based on their efforts to create an environment that safeguards and promotes the health and wellbeing of pupils, staff and the wider school community.



Thorpe Hall was awarded gold after pupils demonstrated an improved knowledge around healthy eating, increased participation levels in school sports clubs and recorded a rise in the number of children eating five portions of fruit and veg every day.



It also has sports leaders – young people who encourage others to participate in sport – and sent some of its students to take part in the borough’s first Feel Good Young Ambassador training this month, which enabled them to learn all about health and wellbeing so they can pass on their knowledge to the rest of their school.



Cllr Williams said: “It’s fantastic to see how much the young people at Thorpe Hall have embraced the Healthy Schools London programme.



“Pupils have really taken on board the importance of living healthy and active lives, and are leading by example as they encourage their friends and family to think more about their own wellbeing.



“In partnership with our schools, we’re committed to giving our young people the best start in life, ensuring they learn from an early age about the impact that decisions around healthy eating and physical activity can have on their development.”



Waltham Forest boasts two schools that have achieved gold awards as part of Healthy Schools London – the other being St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, in Chingford – and it also has 12 schools with silver awards and 30 with bronze.



Currently, more than three quarters of schools in the borough take part in the Healthy Schools London programme, and the Council’s Public Health team is on hand to support any school interested in signing up.



Healthy Schools London awards focus on four key areas – emotional health and wellbeing, physical activity, healthy eating and personal, social and health education (PSHE) – with schools focusing more on their individual health needs for the silver and gold awards.



For more information about Healthy Schools London visit www.healthyschools.london.gov.uk. To learn more about the work of the Council’s Public Health team, visit the Council’s website.

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