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Maroon and White

Vote YES on May 21!

Dear Editor,

The Board of Directors of Maroon and White, the parent's athletic association at Scarsdale High School, applauds the Board of Education for recognizing the lifetime benefits of wellness education and for including the Center for Health, Fitness and Learning in the budget. Maroon and White unanimously supports the development of the Center for Health, Fitness and Learning which will benefit every student in the high school, not just those involved in team sports, by providing a space that contributes to the goal of a well-rounded, forward-thinking, high quality educational experience for all students. The new facility will be an important component in the plan for "Scarsdale Education for Tomorrow" to educate the "whole" child, emphasizing the critical importance of physical education, wellness, and lifelong healthy lifestyles.

Research shows that physical activity and fitness positively influences academic performance through the enhancement of brain function and cognition. It encourages psychological well-being, reduces stress, promotes socialization, and increases self-awareness, self-esteem, and self-confidence. We all want our children to be successful, and these are the types of attributes that are important to the success and well-being of our students in their adult lives.

We've had the opportunity to talk with a cross-section of students on their thoughts for the new Center for Health, Fitness and Learning and from their comments, we are certain that the space is needed and desired. It will be a safer and more adequate space, and it will be an open, inviting, user-friendly space for ALL of the students at Scarsdale High School, including those students who are not participating in a team sport, but desire regular exercise and wellness education to contribute towards their personal fitness and health goals, and encourage a healthy lifelong lifestyle.

We encourage you, if you have not yet done so, to visit the high school and tour the current Fitness Center and the new space. You'll find the current space cramped, unsafe, and unable to accommodate more than one physical education class at a time. Only a handful of female students and non-athletes use the current fitness center because its location feels unsafe to most females and is uninviting to non-athletes. The current facility does not provide gender equity and does not promote inclusiveness.

As parents, and as a community, we have a responsibility to ensure that our students know and VALUE the importance of physical and wellness education which is so important in the understanding of concepts that help to foster a healthy lifestyle. The new facility will support interdisciplinary learning, enable students to improve health, relieve stress, and perform better academically. It will also allow for future reconfiguration of academic space in the center of the school.

We believe that the Center for Health, Fitness and Learning is essential to the TOTAL education of our students, and will be an important benefit to all students at Scarsdale High School. We encourage the residents of Scarsdale to vote "yes" on the school budget.

Charlotte Carr and Liz Whitney

Co-Presidents, Maroon and White

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