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Students, staff and parents held a ribbon cutting for the new $12,000 running track at Deans Mill School May 29 in Stonington.
The students celebrated the new track by holding a walkathon to raise money for the Children's Heart Foundation. Daniel Kelley, the president of the school's PTO, said the one-eighth of a mile track was funded by the PTO along with grants from Wal-Mart, the Stonington Education Fund and the Connecticut Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance.
The paved track replaced a crushed stone track and was the idea of veteran physical education teacher Sherry Castodio. Kelley said Castodio was pushing for the track for some time as a way to help better measure her students' progress on the mile run portion of the annual President's Council on Physical Fitness exam.
She also helped obtain the grant from the Connecticut Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance.
"And records are being shattered every day," Kelley said about the fitness exam. "Kids are doing laps. Teachers are doing laps and people are using it after school to do laps."