C.D. Fulkes showcases CATCH model during family night

Health and wellness is a top priority at C.D. Fulkes Middle School, which has proved to be a model campus for the Coordinated Approach to Child Health (CATCH) since the program first partnered with Round Rock ISD in 2009.

Since its inception, the campus’ CATCH program has permeated the entire campus culture, especially the campus’ annual CATCH Family Night, which brings community health vendors and experts straight to the community. The family event draws nearly 600 people to the campus to learn about vaccines, healthy food choices and exercise.

“Health, wellness and nutrition is so important and what we’re doing is benefiting the families in our community,” said Valerie Phillips, C.D. Fulkes physical education teacher and RRISD CATCH coordinator. “The parents in our school are working a lot and not always able to go to these outside entities. If they’re not able to go out, then we are bringing these services to them.”

The CATCH program is a part of the University of Texas School of Public Health and the Michael and Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living. CATCH was first implemented as part of a three year grant awarded to Round Rock ISD middle schools. After grant funding ended, C.D. Fulkes staff and administration strived to continue the program’s teachings and services to its community.

“CATCH is an amazing opportunity to assist our community with healthy habits supporting continued health,” C.D. Fulkes Principal Nancy Guerrero said. “CATCH will always remain with us because it’s part of who we are as a school.”

C.D. Fulkes not only enriches its own community with CATCH, the campus also serves as a model for other campuses that are implementing the program. Guerrero and Phillips have spoken multiple times regarding the positive impact of CATCH at C.D. Fulkes and Phillips serves as a national CATCH trainer.

“C.D. Fulkes embodies what CATCH is and really serves as a model campus,” said Megan Grayless, Michael and Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living at the University of Texas School of Public Health research coordinator. “They have made CATCH a campus-wide program, not just through physical education classes, but to promote healthy habits.”