Calera Elementary has been selected as a Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama Be Healthy School and has been awarded a grant in the amount of $10,000. Blue Cross awards the grants are for the implementation of school-based health and wellness programs that emphasize increased exercise, nutrition education, and parental involvement during the school year.
Physical Education teacher Shawn Nash wrote the grant to purchase playground equipment to reinforce the school’s Brain Pump professional development, which stressed the correlation between a student’s physical activity level and being successful academically. The professional development activity included a guest speaker who discussed neuromotor connections to a student’s readiness for learning.
The new playground equipment will include a curved balance beam, spinning whirlwind seats, and a KidNetix Twirl – which allows the students to climb and twirl at the same time.
Fifty percent of the grant will be awarded at the beginning of the 2016 – 2017 school year, along with a banner recognizing the school as a Be Healthy School participant.
The remaining 50 percent will be awarded in January 2017 after documented progress has been made towards the goals stated in the grant application. At the end of the school year, Blue Cross will present each student with a token of appreciation for their commitment to live a healthy lifestyle.