Griffin MS Among Top 11 Healthiest Schools in the Nation

AHG Griffin MS cover

Griffin Middle School was recently recognized for its top-tier efforts to keep its students and staff safe and healthy. The school was among 406 schools around the country recognized by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation (AHG), a leading children’s health organization. But more than that, Griffin was one of only 11 schools nationwide to be named an All-Star for the 2021-2022 school year!

AHG’s list of America’s Healthiest Schools is one of the country’s longest-running national recognition programs honoring schools for supporting the whole health of students, teachers, and staff. The All-Star award recognizes that Griffin Middle School prioritized healthy policies and practices despite numerous challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. They have continued to sustain and promote good health by:

•    Giving students access to quality Health and Physical Education
•    Working with community partners to provide resources to families in need
•    Providing access to physical activity before, during, and after school

Griffin was one of three schools in Georgia to be recognized for their attention to health and cleanliness and the only school in the state to win All-Star status

AHG recognized the 406 schools for implementing best practices in at least one of these nine topic areas: 

1) Strengthening Social-Emotional Health & Learning, presented in collaboration with Harmony SEL at National University and Kaiser Permanente  
2) Cultivating Staff Well-Being, presented in collaboration with Harmony SEL at National University and Kaiser Permanente  
3) Increasing Family and Community Engagement, presented in collaboration with Kohl’s
4) Improving Nutrition and Food Access
5) Implementing Local School Wellness Policy  
6) Bolstering Physical Education and Activity  
7) Enriching Health Education  
8) Promoting Tobacco-Free Schools
9) Supporting School Health Services

However, to be named an All-Star Healthiest School, Griffin implemented best practices in all NINE categories. Griffin’s Wellness Committee Chair, Adam Mullis, was very proud of the All-Star recognition. “We’re honored to receive this national recognition for our dedication to supporting the well-being of students and staff,” said Mr. Mullis, a Griffin Physical Education teacher. “We will remain steadfast in our commitment to fostering environments where all members of the school community can succeed.”

Kathy Higgins, CEO of AHG, spoke highly of this group of schools. “This particular cohort of ‘America’s Healthiest Schools’ exemplifies the fortitude required to serve current and future generations with equity and care,” Ms. Higgins said. “As we enter what is predicted to be another challenging school year, we commend the awardees for their resourcefulness and dedication to addressing the acute health and well-being needs of students, staff, and families.”

Continued diligence will be required, though. As students and staff at Griffin will attest, this award did not come without a lot of hard work and deliberate attention to the details of the classroom and school environment. “Today, and every day, we invite the nation to join Healthier Generation as we honor our schools for their resourcefulness and dedication to addressing the total wellness needs of their students,” concluded Ms. Higgins.

Congratulations on this award and recognition, Griffin! Prioritizing health, safety, and wellness is a critical part of the learning process, and you are pointing the way forward for Cobb, the state, and the nation. Great job!