<span style=""><span style="">Metairie</span> - The New Orleans Saints hosted a contingent of local educators today as part of the Saints' commitment to increasing participation in physical education and participation in area schools.
The Saints, the NFL Network and Cox have designed a program called "Keep Gym in School," an initiative that stresses the benefits associated with high-quality physical education programs. The program is one of many initiatives that the Saints' community relations and youth programs departments organize, promote and operate throughout the Gulf South region on a year-round basis.
As part of the "Keep Gym in School" program, educational seminars such as the one the Saints conducted today, as well as financial assistance in the form of grants are awarded to qualifying schools. On November 11, 2008 New Orleans' Truman Middle School became the third school to celebrate a "Keep Gym in School" grant, which brought students, teachers, and guests together to recognize the importance of physical education in America's schools.
In the November assembly the Truman Middle School students packed the gym for an exciting pep rally headlined by the Saints' all-time leading rusher, Tory Humphrey/Deuce McAllister.aspx">Deuce McAllister. With the band playing, dancers dancing, and the students cheering, McAllister joined Cox Director of Public & Government Affairs Brad Grundmeyer, Saints Owner and Executive Vice President Rita Benson LeBlanc, and NFL Network's Scott Hanson to unveil plans for the $55,000 grant, including a new fitness room, a refurbished football field, and a new cache of physical education equipment.
The goal of today's hands on seminars was designed to teach in-school physical activities that will lead to increased healthy lifestyles. Area teachers arrived at the Saints' facility and were given a presentation of the program and presented with ideas of how to increase participation and make better use of the opportunities they have to positively impact their time with their students.
Following the initial seminar in the Saints' auditorium, the teachers and educators ate lunch in the team's cafeteria and then returned for further educational seminars that stressed healthy lifestyle choices that they can impart onto their students.
The teachers then concluded their day at Saints camp with a behind-the-scenes tour of the team's training facility.