Ocean Springs school wins big for being healthiest in state

Ocean Springs school wins big for being healthiest in state

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - A South Mississippi school is setting a fitness example for others to follow.

Ocean Springs Upper Elementary had plenty of reasons to get pumped up during a pep rally. On Thursday, the school won the "Healthiest School in Mississippi" award.

The honor came with a very big check - $50,000

"Oh man, we were so excited! We jumped up and down and couldn't believe it," said Ocean Springs Upper Elementary Assistant Principal Mary Rodgers.

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation honored the school for making all the right moves to promote healthy habits.

"Ocean Springs Upper Elementary is doing everything right when it comes to health and wellness. They're encouraging their kids to develop healthier lifestyle habits, eating healthy, physical activity," said Eugenia King with the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation.

Fifth-grader Tanner Beauguez says he's not surprised at the honor.

"Not too much, because we do a lot of exercises and moving around and stuff, and we eat really healthy here," said Beauguez.

The school was also recognized for programs including, teacher weight loss challenges, community fun runs and health fairs. The $50,000 grant will allow the school to build a new obstacle course playground, cafeteria, purchase equipment for physical education classes and a staff fitness room.

"I think it's great to show other kids what they should do, and how they should do it to be the healthiest school," said fifth-grader Morgan Wilson.

Schools on the Mississippi Coast raked in awards for 2016. Ocean Springs High and 28th St. Elementary in Gulfport each received $25,000.

In 2015, Ocean Springs Upper Elementary also won the $25,000 prize.

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