Washingtonville Wins $25K PE Equipment Grant
By Eugenia Moskowitz
Washingtonville’s Taft Elementary School has won a $25,000 fitness equipment grant from Danimals and ShopRite’s Project Fit America program as a result of being nominated as one of about 50 schools participating in the mid-Atlantic states region. Four schools each won the same amount based on votes tallied after a month of daily voting, with Taft clocking in with the highest total of 15,054 votes.
The grant consists of $18,000 for: state of the art outdoor fitness equipment; indoor fitness equipment; a curriculum of indoor and outdoor activities and challenges; lesson plan support materials; phys ed training; and a $7,000 cash stipend for the installation of the outdoor equipment. Taft principal Christine Williams said the equipment will be installed over the summer months, and an opening day celebration and dedication will likely happen in September or October of 2019.
Taft physical education teachers Michelle Henn and Candice Mullady were thrilled to see their school win, and Williams made an announcement in a robocall to families as well as a special surprise announcement to the students during an assembly. The Washingtonville community of parents rallied for votes by holding gatherings, making daily announcements on social media, and sending out daily reminder emails. Voters could vote once daily from each email address they had.
While the equipment will be installed at Taft, the outdoor equipment will be available for all in the community to use after school hours and/or while school is not in session, as all three elementary school playgrounds are open to the Washingtonville school district community equally. “This is a huge win for Washingtonville,” one parent said, “for all our kids.”
The other three winning schools were Ostrander Elementary in Wallkill, North Main Elementary in Monroe, and Christa McAuliffe Middle School in Jackson, NJ.
CAPTION: Taft principal Christine Williams with physical education teachers Michelle Henn and Candice Mullady. (Photo provided)