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Break the Barriers Awarded $1.5 Million Grant to Support Physical Education, Health and Nutrition Program for Kids in California's Central Valley



 “  The goal of the PEP project is to develop a fully inclusive and integrated physical education, health and nutrition program in California's Central Valle...  
Break the Barriers, Inc., today announced that it will receive $500,000 per year for the next three years from The Carol M. White Physical Education
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 Program (PEP). The PEP funds will be used exclusively to improve and expand the physical education and afterschool programs in the Fresno, Clovis, Madera, Kings Canyon, Fowler and Golden Valley Unified School
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 Districts.

FRESNO, Calif. (PRWEB) February 15, 2007 -- Break the Barriers, Inc., the nation's premier sports-arts center uniting the able and disabled, today announced that it will receive $500,000 per year for the next three years from The Carol M. White Physical Education Program (PEP). The PEP funds will be used exclusively to improve and expand the physical education and afterschool programs in the Fresno, Clovis, Madera, Kings Canyon, Fowler and Golden Valley Unified School Districts. Program partners include CSU Fresno, Fresno and Madera County Offices of Education, Kids Kan, Inc. and, Joe Herzog, Region 28 chairman for the California Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (CAPHERD).

The Carol M. White Physical Education Program is part of the U.S. Department of Education that provides grants to initiate, expand, and improve physical education programs for K--12 students in order to help them make progress toward meeting state standards for physical education.

"The goal of the PEP project is to develop a fully inclusive and integrated physical education, health and nutrition program in California's Central Valley," said Break the Barriers Co-founder and Executive Director Deby Hergenrader. "Students who participate in the project will adopt healthier habits and benefit from creative, regular exercise doing activities they enjoy, and learn
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 to make more nutritious food choices."

Dr. Gale Gorke, founder and executive director of Kids Kan, Inc., will serve as project director. Gorke has spent more than 25-years in public education administration, and has implemented the PEP project in multiple communities.

"We have a solid infrastructure in place from which to implement and sustain the project. Improvements are being made to the curriculum to meet state P.E. standards, and we are employing measures to evaluate the short- and long-term effects of the project," said Gorke. "However, I think our greatest success will result from the increased skill and knowledge of the PEP staff due to ongoing training, and the enthusiastic support and involvement of the parents and the local communities."

The PEP funds will boost the existing physical education programs in the schools, districts and communities by developing research-based lab training schools and a community lab training site at Break the Barriers; and by providing updated training in P.E., health and nutrition standards in the university credential and certification programs at the school sites and at the lab training sites.

The physical education program will be expanded by adding fully inclusive Adaptive Physical Education activities (adapted or modified to address the individualized needs of children and youth who have gross motor developmental delays), so all students may participate equally in the P.E., afterschool, and recreation programs. Research-based sports, recreation, health, fitness, and nutrition programs are being adapted to meet the specific needs of participants. There will also be a focus on integrating California's Health and Nutrition Content Standards with California's current and new Physical Education Standards.

About Break the Barriers
Fresno-based Break the Barriers is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization established in 1985. Through sports, arts, aquatics, health and fitness programs for the able bodied and the disabled, Break the Barriers is recognized as a "National Role Model for Inclusion" by the U.S. Department of Special Education, acknowledged throughout California, the United States, and abroad for its equity advocacy.

http://breakthebarriers.org


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