By Deandra Du
Editor in Chief
The newly established Student Wellness Council seeks to promote the mental and physical health of Gabrielino High School individuals. It will officially come into form in the remaining months of the school year.
Senior Jasmine Truong, president of Gabrielino Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA), is spearheading the effort to address schoolwide health-related issues as the only student representative on the district wellness council.
Truong, along with other HOSA members, plans to organize wellness-related activities at future meetings. They include free taste tests of potential items for the cafeteria menu, surveys to identify student and staff needs, and strategies to address those needs which are greatest.
Their objective is to increase student involvement and engagement in improving lunch nutrition, physical activity, and health education on campus.
“In high school especially, students are overwhelmingly anxious and stressed out,” stated Truong. “A big thing we want to focus on as testing season nears is student mental health.”
The student-led initiative will work in conjunction with the San Gabriel Unified School District (SGUSD) Wellness Council to improve wellness for the greater community.
The district council noticed that in last fall’s district wellness assessment, Gabrielino in particular had different needs from those of other schools. As a result, it wanted to establish a student council within Gabrielino to offer more specific support and receive more personalized feedback.
The final version of the student council was approved by the school board last March.
One of the biggest hopes SGUSD has for the Gabrielino council is to conduct student taste tests, optimizing both the nourishment and appeal of school foods. According to Kristin Fyfe, SGUSD Food Services Consultant, Washington Elementary School’s Student Council and Jefferson Middle School have already begun to do so.
When the board met in October, it made establishing a wellness council at each school site a priority. The SGUSD Wellness Council hopes that creating school councils will help educate the surrounding community and allow it to hear from more voices.
Informational meetings for the Gabrielino Student Wellness Council are held on Thursdays at lunch in B203.