Edgewood, KY—More than $200,000 of grant funding from the Kentucky Department for Public Health has been distributed to five Northern Kentucky school districts to support initiatives that reduce substance abuse, violence, underage drinking, bullying and suicide, as well as programs that promote long-term educational and career success. The Early Childhood Healthy Living grants will run through June of 2019.
“We need to build a foundation in our children for healthy lives, free from substance abuse,” said Lynne M. Saddler, MD, MPH, District Director of Health for Northern Kentucky Health Department. “The programs being implemented with these grant funds can reduce the use of alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs and drive down youth suicide rates. They can improve children’s social and emotional health by reducing violence and bullying. Such programs can build strong systems for teachers and parents and improve the long-term health of our community.”
Projects funded in Northern Kentucky include:
The Beechwood Independent School District received $15,000 to implement the WhyTry Program, which provides dropout prevention, violence prevention and truancy reduction for students at Guardian Angel, a school run in partnership with the Diocesan Children’s Home that allows students to receive court-ordered treatment for substance abuse and behavioral health conditions.
The Dayton Independent School District received $40,000 to implement the CoreLife program at Lincoln Elementary. CoreLife teaches students the characteristics they need to make positive life choices, with a demonstrated reduction in bullying behavior and improved attendance.
The Erlanger-Elsmere Independent School District received a total of $80,000, to be split between Lindeman Elementary School and Miles Elementary School. Two curricula will be implemented: Second Step at Lindeman Elementary will address risk factors that lead to youth substance abuse and reduce violence and bullying. The Metamorphasis program to be implemented at Miles Elementary targets substance abuse and bullying prevention, and aims to improve student/school engagement.
The Kenton County School District received $28,500 for the CoreLife curriculum. It will initially be implemented at Fort Wright Elementary and White’s Tower Elementary, with possible expansion to other schools.
The Walton-Verona Independent School District received $40,000 to fund the S.A.F.E. program at Walton-Verona Elementary. It includes an eight-to-ten week classroom curriculum that teaches students how to avoid risky health behaviors, along with materials that engage families in the curriculum.
The Northern Kentucky schools are among the 28 school districts statewide to receive Early Childhood Healthy Living grants, with statewide funds distributed totaling $942,938 and reaching 96 schools. To be eligible, schools had to submit a grant application. Grant recipients are required to report results of their projects to the Kentucky Department for Public Health.