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NEWS RELEASES 2007-08 :: JANUARY 10, 2008


Thirty-two North Carolina public schools today received grants from the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust totaling $1 million to improve physical education programs for students. John Frank, director of the Health Care Division of the Trust, presented the funds to the State Board of Education and the NC Department of Public Instruction at a news conference with State Superintendent June Atkinson and State Board of Education Vice Chairman Wayne McDevitt.

The schools receiving these grants were selected based on financial need as measured by the schools' percentage of students who qualify for free and reduced lunch and on their school district's low wealth status. A complete list of recipients is below.

"Because of the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust's generosity, some of North Carolina's neediest schools will now be able to purchase state-of-the-art equipment to help students develop the habit of regular physical activity," said State Board of Education Vice Chairman Wayne McDevitt. "Physical activity is a key life habit students need to develop so that they can be healthy, active adults."

"Our goal at the Kate B. Reynolds Trust is to improve the health and quality of life for the financially needy in North Carolina. We are excited to partner with North Carolina public schools to help youngsters establish healthy habits early in their lives," said Frank. "We see this as a healthy investment in our state's future."

The grants will be used to purchase modern physical education equipment such as heart rate monitors, computer software, and innovative technology to promote physical activity. Students will be able to participate in physical activity through a virtual system to assist teachers in teaching sports skills and monitor student heart rates to ensure that students stay safely in their target heart rate zones.

Participating vendors in the project were selected through a formal proposal process which ensured the products they would sell to the schools would assist them in meeting the 30 minutes of daily physical activity required for elementary and middle school students. Grant recipients will be purchasing equipment from Action Based Learning, Geofitness, HOPSPorts/Be Active NC, Michigan Fitness, NASPE, Polar, Skillastics, Socci, Sportime and Walk4Life.

The State Board of Education's mission is that every public school student will graduate from high school, globally competitive for work and postsecondary education and prepared for life in the 21st century. A part of that preparation is to assist students in building healthy lifelong habits, such as physical exercise and good eating habits. Students in grades K-8 are expected to have regular physical education at school and to have the opportunity for 30 minutes of daily physical activity. At the high school level, students are required to take one unit of physical education as part of their graduation requirements.

At least 30 minutes daily of moderate physical activity is recommended for everyone in order to help maintain a healthy weight and cardiovascular health, however 23 percent of children and nearly 40 percent of adults get no free-time physical activity each day, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.

For more information about the Kate B. Reynolds grants and the recipient schools, please contact the NC Department of Public Instruction's Communications division at 919.807.3450.

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NC Schools Receiving Grants (xls, 112kb)

Vendors List (pdf, 142kb)

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.