Meadow Lands wins President’s Challenge
Meadow Lands Elementary School is the first school in Kentucky to earn the distinction as an Active Lifestyle Model School, and is one of only 38 schools in the United States earning this national honor. MLES has participated in the President’s Challenge Active Lifestyle Program for four years. The program is sponsored by the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports and is designed to help children and adults develop commitments to physical activity and fitness. An amazing 292 MLES students have qualified for the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award this year. The students were required to complete activity logs for a six-week period, documenting at least 60 minutes of activity for a minimum of five days a week during that time. To earn recognition as an Active Lifestyle Model School, at least 35 percent of a school’s eligible enrollment must qualify for the Presidential Active Lifestyle Award at least twice during a school year. At Meadow Lands, 198 of the 374 students have already qualified twice this school year. Meadow Lands students may participate in activities such as the school’s wrestling team and cheerleading squad. Kids also have “fitness barrels” available to them, which are full of equipment such as jump ropes and other tools to encourage physical activity during recess. Meadow Lands also incorporates the “Take the Long Way” program when walking between classes and activities such as music, computer labs, lunch and PE. According to Physical Education for Progress, schools that offer quality physical education and activity programs demonstrate a corresponding increase in academic and achievement scores. Physical education is essential to the development of growing children; and helps improve overall health, self-esteem, interpersonal relationships, responsible behavior and independence. “Our school shares this belief and values improving the fitness of its students, providing children with many opportunities to be active during the school day,” said MLES physical education teacher Amy Bouchard. “Meadow Lands students have the opportunity to learn and grow in an environment that gives every child the opportunity to be the very best – academically, socially and physically.” MLES received two General Mills Community Action Grants that provided sponsorship to purchase the awards for their 292 award-winning students.