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NEWS RELEASES 2003-04 :: OCTOBER 31, 2003


Lower Creek Elementary School in Caldwell County Schools and Blythe Elementary in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools earlier this month were named State Champions by the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. Lower Creek Elementary also received this prestigious award last year.

The State Champion award is presented annually to three schools in each state with the highest number of students scoring at or above the 85th percentile on the President's Challenge. The five assessments of the President's Challenge measure four components of physical fitness: a one-mile run/walk for heart and lung endurance, curl-ups for abdominal strength and endurance, a "sit and reach"stretch for muscular flexibility, pull-ups for upper body strength and endurance, and a shuttle run for agility.

"Congratulations to these two State Champions," State Superintendent Mike Ward said. "It is essential that children develop healthy habits of exercise and nutrition alongside their academic achievement. The two truly are complementary."

Lower Creek Elementary and Blythe Elementary will receive an award certificate and national recognition for their fitness achievement.

The President's Challenge Physical Activity and Fitness Awards Program, which has been available to schools since 1958, offers presidential recognition and awards for fitness to all students. The program offers a range of fitness levels to show that everyone is a winner in fitness. The President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports serves as an advisory body to the President and the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services on matters involving physical activity/fitness and sports participation.

For more information on the President's Challenge, please go online to or contact Jeff McClaine, associate director, The President's Challenge, 812.855.8972, or by email,

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 126 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.