Viola Gibson and Harrison Named Blue Zones Schools


Harrison and Viola Gibson elementary schools have now been officially designated as Blue Zones Schools.

Harrison and Viola Gibson elementary schools have been officially designated as Blue Zones Schools after meeting the criteria to earn them recognition for being committed to providing the best possible environment for students to learn and grow.

Both schools have implemented policies and programs which create a learning environment that supports well-being of students and staff including providing a tobacco-free campus, making changes to the lunchroom to help students choose healthier foods, prohibiting unhealthy food advertising on school grounds, incorporating lifestyle focused activities into physical education curriculum, creating a school garden and starting a Walking School Bus program.

“The Harrison School Community is excited to celebrate our Blue Zone’s Designation,” noted Amy Russell, Principal. “This is an awesome acknowledgment of the steps we are taking to create a healthier place for students and staff.”

“Overall student wellness is always our mission at Viola Gibson,” explained Shannon Kehoe, Principal. “Blue Zones has given us a more complete look at wellness in our school and has enhanced our culture.”

“The environment we create for students and young people has an impact on their daily lives,” said Stephanie Neff, Cedar Rapids Blue Zones Project Coordinator. “That environment will serve as the standard by which they will live out their future – it will become their ‘norm.’ Educators and administrators not only impart knowledge on a daily basis, they are also influencing lifestyle choices that students will emulate for years to come.”

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