Yorktown, N.Y. – 10/08/2013 – On Tuesday, Senator Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson) joined students, faculty and staff at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School in Yorktown to cut the ribbon for their new playground.
Senator Ball secured a $75,000 bullet aid grant to make the project possible. The former playground at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School was rather small, only capable of holding 75 students at a time. The school itself has over 600 students, so the numbers did not match up.
“Childhood obesity is an epidemic that we are just beginning to grapple with the reality and consequences of. Physical conditioning is a critical component of a broader education and these early building blocks set the stage for future health. I’m proud to work with this great school to help counteract the ever-growing problem of childhood obesity and diabetes before it starts. This playground will play a large role in that, for this great community,” said Senator Greg Ball. “I am glad I was able to help Ben Franklin Elementary School get this funding and will continue to work for schools all across my district to do the same.”
The new equipment will help prevent childhood obesity by keeping kids active. The “Play On” project at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School promotes vigorous activity during recess and the new playground will be a large part of that. Children will use the equipment to improve their upper body strength, core muscles, cardio and even their balance on some of the obstacles.
“We are very excited that the Lakeland Central School District and Senator Greg Ball are able to partner again to provide a wonderful opportunity for the students at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School. The funding provided by Senator Ball for the playground and, previously, for a number of other projects in the district have greatly benefitted the Lakeland Central School students and community,” said Dr. George Stone, Lakeland superintendent of schools.
“As principal of Benjamin Franklin School, I am pleased to announce that our two year effort to build a new playground is now a reality,” said Patricia Mcilvenny-Moore, Principal of Benjamin Franklin Elementary. “However, this would not have been possible without a $75,000 grant facilitated by Senator Greg Ball. On behalf of Benjamin Franklin students and staff, we are truly grateful to Senator Ball and his office for their determined effort to make this happen.”
“On behalf of the Ben Franklin PTA and families we would like to send a big thank you to Senator Ball for his generous support in assisting to build a playground at the Benjamin Franklin Elementary School,” said Diane Kness, PTA President. “It is often said that it takes a village to raise a child and in this case it is very accurate.”
“Two years ago, the Ben Franklin playground committee was formed having no idea what we were getting ourselves into! We had no idea how much money had to be raised, but were determined to update the play equipment before our children graduated,” said Karen Brown of the Benjamin Franklin Elementary Playground Committee. “Here we are 2 years later and thanks to many helping hands, fundraisers, donations and the grant from Greg Ball’s office, we have an awesome playground and swings for the present as well as the future children of Ben Franklin to enjoy. We are thrilled!”
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