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Shawnee Cohn, Discovery Education

-Educators From Florida, Kentucky, and Ohio Awarded a Total of $14,000 to Expand Health and Wellness Initiatives in Elementary Schools-

-‘fit 4 the classroom’ Offers Educators Standards-Aligned, STEM-Based Resources to Educate Students about Healthy Lifestyle Choices-

Silver Spring, Md. (June 9, 2015) – Sanford Health, WebMD and Discovery Education announced today the winners of the third annual ‘fit 4 the classroom national sweepstakes. Chosen at random from thousands of entries from schools across the nation, winners from Florida, Kentucky and Ohio will each be awarded funding to expand health and wellness initiatives at their schools. The grand prize winner, Ashley Chechila, a teacher at Rawlings Elementary School of St. Johns County School District in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, will be awarded a $5,000 personal prize and $5,000 for her school. Additionally, Justin Padgett, a teacher at McKinney Elementary School of Lincoln County Schools in McKinney, KY, and Linda Crawford, a teacher at Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Fairfield, OH, were named second place winners and will receive a $1,000 personal prize and $1,000 for their schools.

Launched in 2012, the ‘fit 4 the classroom’ program promotes ‘whole-body’ health and wellness among students nationwide by offering no-cost resources that elementary educators can utilize to educate, motivate and inspire their students to make healthy lifestyle choices. Rooted in the four pillars of fit – mood, move, food and recharge – the program provides educators with dynamic, cross-curricular lesson plans and interactive learning tools that emphasize science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) subject areas and are standards-aligned. The fit 4 the classroom lessons encourage insightful conversations between educators, students and their families, covering topics such as the effect of music on mood, and how sleep affects the body and brain.

“fit 4 the classroom continues to be an exciting program, and the level of participation across the nation attests to the value that educators are discovering from it.  Discovery Education and WebMD are great partners, and we are proud to work together to activate healthy choices in the classroom,” said Neal Nachtigall, director of Children's Health and Fitness Initiatives at Sanford Health.

“I am overjoyed to have been awarded this prize, and am beyond grateful to everyone involved,” said grand prize winner Ashley Chechila. “I am very passionate about being active as well as helping to get kids at such a young age practicing and understanding the importance of healthy behavior.”

Last year’s grand prize winners from Baltimore County Public Schools’ Mary Ann Winterling Elementary School #150 in Baltimore, Md. used their award to expand and improve a fresh fruit program at their school, which exposes students to a variety of exotic fruits.  Portions of the award were also used to order supplies for physical education, and to fund a program called “Playworks,” which teaches students fun recess games and affords them the opportunity to participate in competitive sports.

“In addition to supporting students’ academic growth and achievement, educators can also create environments where children develop their decision-making skills and learn good habits for a healthy lifestyle,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Discovery Education. “We are proud to partner with Sanford Health and WebMD to provide classrooms nationwide a valuable suite of digital STEM content and resources that empowers children to make healthy, positive lifestyle choices.”

For more information on the ‘fit 4 the classroom’ program, visit

About Sanford Health

Sanford Health is an integrated health system headquartered in the Dakotas. It is the largest, rural, not-for-profit health care system in the nation with 43 hospitals and 243 clinics in nine states and three countries. With 27,000 employees, including 1,400 physicians in more than 80 specialty areas of medicine, Sanford Health is the largest employer in the Dakotas.

Nearly $1 billion in gifts from philanthropist Denny Sanford have allowed for several initiatives, including global children's clinics, genomic medicine and specialized centers researching cures for type 1 diabetes, breast cancer and other diseases. For more information, visit

About WebMD

WebMD Health Corp. is the leading provider of health information services, serving consumers, physicians, healthcare professionals, employers, and health plans through our public and private online portals, mobile platforms and health focused publications. The WebMD Health Network includes,,,,, Medscape Education ( and other WebMD owned sites and apps. WebMD®, Medscape®, CME Circle®, Medpulse®, eMedicine®, MedicineNet®,® and RxList® are among the trademarks of WebMD Health Corp. or its subsidiaries.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content and professional development for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content that supports the implementation of Common Core, professional development, assessment tools, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, over 40 percent of all primary schools the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at