Insight Grants

Kenston School District Play Blue in Motion Community Day!

Back in 2010, the Insight Team had the privilege of working with the folks at Kenston Local School District in Ohio to complete a needs assessment for, write, and submit a Carol M. White Physical Education Program (PEP) grant. We were thrilled when Kenston’s grant was awarded for the full requested amount of $677,706 for Year 1, and $53,894 per year for Years 2 and 3!

Kenston’s program is known as Play Blue (Promoting Learning for Active Youth). The district has put the funds to great use through district-wide programming that includes an ongoing process for involving district staff and community members and partners in decision-making, implementation of wide-spread physical activity and healthy eating policy changes, and brand new age-appropriate fitness centers at each of their five school buildings.

Policy changes include instituting use of uniform assessments for Physical Education district wide, implementing “Brain Breaks” (breaks for physical activity during core academic classes) for all grades, and numerous changes in Food Service. Impressively, Kenston’s Food Service participates in the Farm to School program and purchases primarily locally grown produce, makes available and clearly labels foods for students with special dietary needs (including but not limited to Gluten-Free and Vegetarian options), and has ensured all beverage and food vending options are in compliance with recommendations made by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.

The fitness centers serve all 3,100 students in the district in grades K through 12. Centers include a mix of standard cardiovascular fitness equipment (treadmills, stationary bikes, ellipticals, etc.), exergaming equipment (physically active video games), and strength training equipment (sand bells, climbing walls, obstacle course elements, Railyard, etc.) appropriate to the grades of the students served by each.

As part of the Play Blue initiative, Kenston held the 1st Annual Play Blue in Motion community wellness day on April 15, 2012. The event was planned as a way for local community residents and families to see all of the new fitness equipment, learn more about the program, and pick up some healthy tips for themselves. Kenston even had  a special appearance by 1996 US Olympic Gold Medal gymnast Dominique Moceanu. The event brought together members of the community, families, students, and local businesses and turned out to be a great success!

Kenston put together a nice slideshow from the Play Blue in Motion community day, which had over 1300 attendees! Watch it here:


You may be wondering, “But does it work?” The answer is a resounding yes! Kenston is reporting a tremendous increase in the percentage of students who are active for at least 60 minutes every day.

Great job, Kenston!


Leave a Comment

Insight Grants