The 6th Annual Indiana School Health Network Conference “One Voice for Indiana School Health” was more than the conference theme, but a call to action encouraging all stakeholders to lend their voice to an ongoing conversation to positively impact school health throughout Indiana. Over 200 attendees took this opportunity to network, learn and share best practices with school health professionals and advocates throughout the state. National, regional and local speakers and exhibitors shared valuable information on how to support these efforts.
Superintendent of Public Instruction, Glenda Ritz, kicked off the conference and introduced the keynote speaker, Jessica Lawrence, who showed how the core of a school community is how it supports the health of the students, teachers, staff and larger school community. Former First Lady Cheri Daniels presented the Governor & Cheri Daniels School Health Award to Woody Myers, M.D. and State Representative Toni Cook for their leadership with Ryan White during the early days of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Indiana. This year marked the 25th Anniversary of Ryan White’s death from AIDS. Mike Harding from M.A. Harding & Associates led a panel discussion between Superintendent Dr. Sharon Johnson Shirley from Lake Ridge School Corporation in Gary and State Representatives Greg Porter and Tony Cook on school health legislative issues. Bonnie Bazata from the St. Joseph County Bridges Out of Povery Initiative led compelling sessions on how poverty impacts the health and education of students and their families.