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TO: Superintendents of Schools


FROM: Susan A. Gendron, Commissioner of Education


DATE: June 6, 2003


SUBJECT: Maine Response to The Steps to a HealthierUS Initiative (STEPS)


The federal Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released the Request for Applications (RFA) for Steps to a HealthierUS (STEPS). This initiative seeks to achieve 3 goals:


           Prevent Americans from developing diabetes

           Prevent Americans from developing obesity

           Prevent Americans from being hospitalized for asthma


These goals are highly consistent with many activities currently underway in Maine, including the work of communities and School Administrative Units through the Healthy Maine Partnerships. The Maine Bureau of Health will apply in the funding category of State-Coordinated Small City and Rural Community Applicants for $2,000,000. This RFA requires selection of 2-4 communities (including their School Administrative Units) prior to submittal of the application to partner with the State. These communities must be contiguous geographic areas. Maine seeks at least one small city applicant of population size 50,000 or larger and at least one rural applicant of population size 10,000 or larger. Communities must participate in the application process with the State by writing a work plan that will be included in the final application and by securing letters of support from local partners. Specific criteria about community applicants may be modified until the formal request for community participants is distributed on May 30, 2003.


If you are not currently a School Administrative Unit in a Healthy Maine Partnership and you want to partner with your community to coordinate your School Health programs to reduce health risks and promote healthy lifestyles, contact your local Partnership listed on the pages that follow, or you can contact William Primmerman at (624-6698) or Jacqueline Ellis at (287-3856) for further information. Community partners will be selected by June 11, 2003; applications from States are due at CDC July 15, 2003. Awards will be made to States in mid September 2003.


Attachment:  Healthy Maine Partnership List