NASHVILLE, Tenn. —Titans cornerback Jason McCourty joined Southeast United Dairy Industry Association (SUDIA) and visited more than 700 students at East Robertson County High School as they were recognized as the state winners of the "Milk: The Titans of Breakfast Contest".
McCourty serves as a Fuel Up to Play 60 ambassador with the Southeast United Dairy Industry Association. Fuel Up to Play 60 (FUTP60), the nation's largest in-school wellness program, which is a partnership between the National Football League (NFL) and the National Dairy Council (NDC), in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. FUTP60 empowers students to live active and healthy lifestyles by playing or exercising for at least 60 minutes each day and fueling up with healthy foods such as low-fat and fat-free dairy.
"It means a lot to me to be able to reach out to kids all across Tennessee and spread the message about Fuel Up to Play 60," said McCourty. "Programs like these are one of the reasons I love being a Tennessee Titan!"
East Robertson High School kicked off the Fuel Up To Play 60 Fuel Greatness campaign last fall with the breakfast contest called "Milk: The Titan of Breakfast . East Robertson High school had the highest percent increase state wide with a 47% increase in Breakfast Consumption and 30% in milk consumption. The students received the breakfast celebration and a cash prize of $2,500.
"I cannot say enough about the positive impact this program has made on East," said Mary Cook, principal of East Robertson High School. "We have students who normally do not eat breakfast at all, to take advantage of this program and it makes a difference in how a child's day starts off. Full bellies help create sharp minds and sharp minds produce great students. Hunger is a real issue in every school and community. I cannot say thank you enough to the Titans' and the Tennessee Dairy Farmers who have helped make this program possible. Remember – Milk, it does a body good!"
Titans CB Jason McCourty joins SUDA in honoring more than 700 students at East Robertson County High School recognized as state winners of the âMilk: The Titans of Breakfast Contest.â (Photos: Lynne McCracken)
"A healthy breakfast at the start of the day is one way to ensure students are getting the best tools for learning and staying focused," said Patsi Gregory, director of child nutrition for Robertson County Schools.
Hunger is a real issue that many children struggle with each day and schools play a vital role in feeding those children. Statistics show that one in five Tennessee students come to school hungry and do not receive the healthy foods they need to fight illness or concentrate in class, which leads to missed school days. New research shows that better nutrition starting with nutrient-packed foods like low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese, fruit, vegetables and whole grains, coupled with increased physical activity can lead to better academic achievement. All students deserve a chance to be great at what is important to them.
Busy weekday mornings make it a challenge for families to find time for a healthy breakfast, so to encourage more families to take advantage of the healthy choices available with school breakfast; East Robertson High school serve a second chance breakfast in the classroom.
"The contest came at a perfect time to help promote second chance breakfast at East Robertson High School as a way to help those students who did not have time or get a chance to eat breakfast before school started," said Gregory. "The contest helped to show the community that we continue to be committed to providing all students with a nutritious breakfast to help them start their school day. I believe the winning results show that our students are responding to and appreciate our efforts in starting their day healthy and focused. We commend the Tennessee Titans and the Tennessee Dairy Farmers who have made this program possible for schools to help students eat breakfast and increase their milk consumption at school."
Titan's cheerleaders, Abbey and Heidi and mascot, T-Rac also joined the breakfast celebration encouraging students to be physically active and helped serve up some nutritious smoothies to the students for breakfast samples.
"It's programs like this that allow us to make a true impact in our community. Schools will use these additional resources to help children across the state continue to learn about eating healthy and the benefits of playing 60 minutes every day." said Titans Director of Marketing Brad McClanahan.
"We are excited about the partnership with the Tennessee Titans and the opportunity to expand the Fuel Up To Play 60 program in Tennessee schools, said Joan Benton, manager of school health and wellness with Southeast United Dairy Industry Association, Inc. "Healthy students are better students, which is what Fuel Up To Play 60 is all about! The program, launched by the National Dairy Council and the NFL, is focused on getting students to "fuel up with nutrient-rich foods like low-fat & fat-free milk, fruits, vegetables and whole grains and to "get up be active" for at least 60 minutes a day."
Good nutrition and physical activity help ensure a strong and high-achieving generation of youth. Access to nutritious, affordable food and 60 minutes of play a day will continue to help kids "fuel their greatness" inside and outside the classroom.