SCCOG Launches Second Year of Ready, Set, Gold!

The Ready, Set, Gold! (RSG!) Program promotes student fitness and nutrition, thereby helping to fight obesity and diabetes, by pairing U.S. Olympians and Paralympians from the Los Angeles area with local public schools. Operating under the auspices of the Southern California Committee for the Olympic Games (SCCOG), the Olympians visit their designated schools multiple times, encouraging and inspiring goal setting and overall physical fitness, all while aiming to improve each student’s state-mandated Fitnessgram test scores. Currently operating in 50 LAUSD Schools, RSG! plans to expand into more LAUSD schools and neighboring districts.

“Ready, Set, Gold!” began operation in September 2006. For 2007-08, it is a continuing opportunity for the world’s largest concentration of Olympic and Paralympic athletes to make a signal contribution to the larger community, and be recognized for their long-term commitment to youth. It is the first program of its kind in the country and is raising funds to allow for expansion of the program during the 2007-2008 school year.

Under the program, the Olympian visits his or her adopted school’s 5th, 7th or 9th grade physical education classes five times during the school year in order to inspire, motivate and educate students about health and fitness as long-term goals. Goals will be set on the first visit. On each subsequent visit, students’ progress is monitored. A final measurement, for submission to the state of California, will be made during the last visit in Spring 2008. The emphasis for the pupils will be on setting goals, self-discipline, hard work, and giving one’s best effort. The inspiring example of an Olympic/Paralympic athlete is the key to having this success as evidenced by student and teacher testimonials. Through FITNESSGRAM, the results of the entire program will be measurable. RSG! is working to accomplish real improvements in children’s health.

On May 22, 2007 the Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education authored a unanimous resolution of support to the Ready, Set, Gold! Program. The resolution hailed SCCOG and Ready, Set, Gold! for their efforts to “raise awareness about the principles of the Olympic Movement” and thanked the group for “their work with the students” in the LAUSD.