But Edmeston Central School District is teaming up with Bassett Healthcare Network to try to change those numbers, as they launch a new program to improve children's health.
It's called the 5-2-1-0 Program and coordinators say it's designed to promote healthy lifestyle choices for children and their families. Edmeston Central School District say they will be incorporating the program into student's daily activities and in the lunchroom. School employees and parents and they say they're ready for 5-2-1-0 to come to school.
"I've seen a large increase of obese children, not just overweight but obese children, and I think that as a parent, we need to change the way our society takes care of our children," says Vicki Johnson, mother in the Edmeston Central School District.
And that's exactly what coordinators hope the 5-2-1-0 Program will do
"It's something we can try to impress upon and persuade the parents to adapt and in turn, they become more affective in trying to persuade their kids to do the same," says David Strogatz, director of Bassett's Center for Rural Community Health.
"We're setting the tone and setting those habits for the kids to do better later on. As they get older, they make more of their own choices and we want them to make the better choices," says Brian Hunt, superintendent of the Edmeston Central School District.
The 5-2-1-0 Program urges community members to promote healthy food choices for kids and in such a rural community, one mom says it's not so easy to buy fruits and vegetables.
"We don't have access to good fruits and vegetables and foods and things. We just have convenience stores and so we need to get the message to parents that this is really important for our kids," says Johnson.
So what does 5-2-1-0 mean?
"5 fruits and vegetables, 2 hours or less of recreational screen time, 1 hour of physical activity and 0 sugary beverages," says Hunt.
"It's very simple to remember, its very explicit, very specific in terms of the numbers reflecting daily goals," says Strogatz.
Bassett studies show that the program has been successful in nearly 350 schools. They say it will take time, but it'll be worth it.
"If everyone is aware of what 5-2-1-0 is and what it has to offer, I think it will be very helpful in changing the attitude and the behaviors," says Hunt.
Bassett says the 5-2-1-0 Program will be launched in 2 communities in Central New York. They'll kick off the program in 2013 and 2014. And if successful, they plan to expand the program to communities across the region.