Healthy School Environments Focus of Partnership between Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC and Pittsburgh Public Schools

December 3, 2014

PITTSBURGH, PA - December 3, 2014 - Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC and Pittsburgh Public Schools are working together as part of a national program to create a healthier school environment for students.

Children's Hospital will partner with local schools and provide assistance to create environments that promote nutritious eating and physical activity using the country's largest school-based childhood obesity prevention initiative, the Healthy Schools Program.

The program will utilize local and national resources and services to promote positive health changes, both in and out of school, beginning in at least eight pilot schools in Pittsburgh during the current school year. The schools were chosen based on the age range of children, geographic location, and readiness to implement the program.

Children's will support the schools by providing professional development with health experts, access to technical assistance and training, networking and learning opportunities, and science-based resources. Schools also will have the opportunity to earn local and national recognition for their efforts.

"Children's commitment to the community extends beyond our campus and includes improving the well-being of all children, not just those in need of medical care," said Kathy Guatteri, vice president, Outpatient Services at Children's Hospital. "With changes in the school health environment, students will develop a better understanding of how to live a healthier lifestyle, and will be supported in their academic achievement."

"We at Pittsburgh Public Schools thank Children's Hospital for the support they will provide to our many schools which are seeking local ‘Live Well' designation," said Linda Lane, Ed.D., superintendent, Pittsburgh Public Schools. "As adults, we have the opportunity and the responsibility to do all we can to support the development of healthy habits that will serve our children throughout their lives."

The Healthy Schools Program is a project of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, which was co-founded by the American Heart Association and the Clinton Foundation.

Andrea Kunicky, 412-692-6254,  

Marc Lukasiak, 412-692-7919,