ELKADER -- The roughly 500 students enrolled in Central Community Schools in Elkader are among the healthiest in the nation.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture named the district to its list of healthiest school districts in the country.
"Our premise is healthy children are healthy learners," said school nurse Vicki Carolan.
The district has luanched several health initiatives in recent years, including getting a grant for bikes and helmets that kids can use at school.
The changes also can be seen in the cafeteria, with vegetables and fresh food, such as homemade coleslaw.
"We hope that if we introduce it to them young enough they'll eat more healthy versus grabbing the little debbies," said Jessie Kuehl, food services director at the school.
At gym class, the school nurse records each student's body fat and other measurements to take home to parents. The goal is simply making children and parents aware.
"They're either at an underweight, a healthy weight, overweight or obese and they can take that to their primary care provider and ask for direction as to what to do about that," said Carolan.