Shelburne Community School
Vasanthi Meyette, a perky, petite woman with a head of curls, exudes energy, positivity and enthusiasm among the students and staff alike. A K-5 teacher at the Shelburne Community School for the past 15 years, Meyette is passionate about helping students and staff achieve healthier behaviors and in creating a culture of wellness. With this mission in mind, she constantly advocates for and implements activities that support fitness, healthier food options and mindfulness.
Quick to affirm that she prides herself on working in collaboration with other employees to build momentum and ensure success, Meyette introduced us to Jocelyn Bouyea, the school’s nurse. Together they have made employee wellness a priority. Three times a year, faculty meetings are specifically focused on wellness. Individuals can choose from a variety of activities such as spinning, mindfulness, yoga, making mandalas or Pilates.
According to Meyette and Boyeau, several of the 170 employees address their fitness in small like-minded peer groups. There’s a group that engages in the workouts on the PATH Adventure’s Greatest Hits DVD, another group that plays Ultimate Frisbee and another group that takes advantage of the outdoor fitness stations.
To promote and sustain school spirit, Meyette had Shelburne Community School hoodies and T-shirts designed and printed in green and gold, the school’s colors. Fridays are now “Show your school spirit day with colors.” Last June, before school closed for the summer. Meyette and Boyeau created what they called a “white wedding party”, decorating the staff room with white linens, flowers and balloons. The New Moon Café provided a variety of healthy food options. The staff were asked to consider this quote by Brené Brown “Believe we are doing the best we can” and to design a wish flag representing how they planned to embrace this quote during the summer months. Those wish flags are now hanging in the school cafeteria for all to see.