DAYS CREEK — Next to Days Creek Charter School is an area that looks much like a playground, but once you get closer, it’s clear that this is actually outdoor fitness equipment.
The yellow and green colored resistance training options, eight in total, include an exercise bike, rowing machine, and others. The equipment was installed this school year with the help of a $30,000 grant from OEA Choice Trust.
“We are beyond blessed to have been the recipient of OEA Choice Trust’s wellness grant,” DC Fit chair Anna Rickards said. “The opportunities afforded to us by this grant are not to be minimized — we now have a greater ability to be a catalyst for ‘healthy change’ within our school and community, and this is so exciting for the DC Fit committee. We look forward to impacting our school culture in the most healthy ways possible, both now and in the years to come.”
DC Fit is the school district’s employee wellness program, which was launched in September to provide school staff with opportunities to participate in healthy lifestyle choices, such as health screenings, wellness seminars, walking, running and more. Each staff member also received a Fitbit to encourage physical activity.
Students, staff, community members and C&D Lumber helped install the equipment. The equipment is accessible to community members and can be used by anyone over 14, or younger students with adult supervision.
Sarah Jephson, a fourth grade teacher at the school, said she liked the rowing machine but had some difficulty reaching the foot rest due to her height.
“It’s harder to reach, because I’m really short,” she said.
Brian Agee, who teaches woods, metals and small engine repair at the district, said he’d help make something so she’d be able to reach it better in the future.
Agee said that many of his students came out to help with installation.
“I have an applied mathematics class and those kids had to do all the calculations for how much concrete was needed,” he said. “We built the forms and then after the concrete was poured, the kids came out and helped mount the equipment.”
Days Creek is among 37 school districts, education service districts and community colleges that actively promotes the health and wellbeing of school employees according to a press release from the school district.