Four Cary Schools Win AHA Health Awards


Cary, NC — On Thursday, April 16, 2015, at the AHA Healthy Awards Ceremony, four Cary schools were recognized for going above and beyond to support healthy environments and behaviors for their students and staff.

AHA Healthy School Awards

Advocates for Health in Action (AHA) created the “Brains and Bodies” awards program five years ago. The awards celebrate and recognize schools that practice sustainability and wellness.

Apart from providing recognition, the application process for the AHA healthy school awards is a learning experience in itself. When schools apply for the award, they are provided with information, resources and the best practices to model. AHA Director Sara Merz explains:

Award winners are putting evidence-based practices and policies in place to foster healthy school environments. Physically active students who eat healthy foods perform better academically and have fewer disciplinary issues, plus they are forming healthy habits early in life. Our winners are making a real difference in the health of kids in Wake County by changing practices and policies.

This program consists of two different awards. The Brains and Bodies award recognizes healthy, sustainable schools overall, while the Wellness Star recognizes schools that emphasize active transportation (biking or walking) both to-and-from school.

Four Winners in Cary

Advocates for Health in Action announced 14 new 2015 health awards recipients on Thursday, April 16, 2015 at the WCPSS Board Room in Cary. Five out of the 14 winning schools are located in Western Wake County, and four are right here in Cary.

The Cary winners and distinctions include:

  • Penny Road Elementary – Brains & Bodies gold level (highest honor)
  • Davis Drive Elementary – Brains & Bodies gold level (highest honor); Wellness Star award
  • Farmington Woods Elementary – Brains & Bodies bronze level; Wellness Star award
  • Highcroft Drive Elementary – Wellness Star award

What are the Schools Doing Right Now?

Why did these schools win? Take a look at some of the programs each has in place to promote health, wellness and sustainability right now.

  • Farmington Woods will participate in a national bike-to-school day on May 6, 2015.
  • Penny Road put a policy in place that all food served must be of a high nutritional quality.
  • Davis Drive involves students in the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award. Participants track their exercise and nutritional information for six out of eight weeks to receive a certificate and patch from their PE teacher.


Story from staff reports. Photos from Advocates for Health in Action.