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Deputy Mayor of London visits Cherry Orchard Primary School

The Deputy Mayor of London for Education and Childcare visited Cherry Orchard Primary School on 5 July to see first-hand staff and students’ efforts to promote healthy eating. 
 
The Greenwich school has won bronze, silver and gold awards in the Healthy Schools London programme for its work to improve the health and wellbeing of pupils and staff. It has achieved this by increasing the amount of fruit and vegetables eaten by children at lunch time, holding healthy eating lessons and exotic fruit days plus launching a healthy tuck shop and giving youngsters involvement in decision making. 
 
Deputy Mayor Joanne McCartney was welcomed to the school by Headteacher Maria Hill and Councillor Allan MacCarthy, who represented the Council and is the school’s chair of governors. The Deputy Mayor visited a year three class before talking to school councillors aged between 5 and 10 years old about their role in promoting healthy eating. 
 
During a tour of the school the Deputy Mayor visited the dining hall and saw the school’s recently opened fitness playground which includes a health walker, slalom skier, horse skier, rower, sky stepper and an arm and pedal bike. The playground also has a trim trail – a range of physical challenges including a rolling log and balance beam, plus a solar stopwatch so that pupils can race against the clock. 
 
The Deputy Mayor’s visit also included watching a year two yoga lesson and a reception class forest school session, helping reflect the school’s rounded approach to health and wellbeing.  
 
Councillor Miranda Williams, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: “I am very pleased that the hard work by staff from Cherry Orchard Primary School to instil healthy values in pupils has been recognised with a visit from the Deputy Mayor of London. As is the case across the borough, the whole school community should be very proud of what they have achieved in helping ensure the very best start in life for our young people.”
 
The Deputy Mayor of London for Education and Childcare, Joanne McCartney, said: “To build a healthier future for London we must start with our children and make healthy living a habit, not a chore. Cherry Orchard Primary School is doing exactly what we want to see more of; providing healthy eating lessons and incorporating more fruit and vegetables into school meals. They are playing a huge role in building self-esteem among pupils and helping them to understand the importance of expressing their voice. The teachers and pupils are doing a great job and I congratulate each and every one of them. I want to encourage all of London’s schools to follow in their positive footsteps and sign up to Healthy Schools London.”
 
Headteacher Maria Hill added: “We were delighted to welcome the Deputy Mayor of London to our school to share our wide range of healthy eating initiatives. The pupils were very excited to meet her and I am sure that this visit will encourage them to keep up their good work.”
 
The Royal Borough of Greenwich launched its Sugar Smart campaign earlier this year in conjunction with the Jamie Oliver Foundation and Good Food in Greenwich. 
 
The campaign – which asks local institutions to take action to promote healthier, lower sugar alternatives – has gained support from Charlton Athletic Football Club and Community Trust, Wincanton Logistics, local caterer GSPlus and Charlton Park Rugby Club – amongst others.