INNOVATION COMPETITION WINNER
Miami-Dade County Public Schools, the 4th largest district in the nation, is at the leading edge when it comes to integrating technology and current physiology science to engage and motivate students. Miami-Dade operates in a highly space-constrained environment; many of the elementary schools lack a gymnasium or any dedicated space for physical activity. Tackling this issue head-on, classrooms have been repurposed into student wellness labs and outfitted with an array of current equipment and technology. Exergaming via popular platforms such as Wii and Dance Dance Revolution, cardio bikes linked to PlayStation virtual trainers, and equipment for yoga, pilates, and cardio circuits; MDCPS students of all abilities have access to a wide range of solutions to get them moving. Under the professional supervision of their P.E. instructors, students take part in vigorous, stimulating physical activity in a non-competitive, inclusive environment. Through innovative engagement of community groups, non-profits, and the private sector, MDCPS has made this vision a reality and is rapidly introducing this model to more school buildings. Initiated at the high school and junior high levels, the model is now being piloted and expanded to reach elementary students as well.