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During Tuesday night’s school board meeting, the Helena Public School Board of Trustees recognized the Capital High School Physical Education Department for a national award the educators recently received.

The National Association for Sport and Physical Education honored Capital High with the STARS award for the school’s work in developing and putting in place an outstanding physical education program.

Members of Capital High’s physical education department are Mike Burk, Steve Gross, Reg Hageman, Pat Hurley, Tim Kelly, Jennifer Loomis and Shirley Chesterfield-Stanton and Greg Trenary.

Only 59 schools in the country have ever received the award, said Chesterfield-Stanton, a retired Capital High teacher who was instrumental in the school winning the award.

As part of meeting the requirements for the award, each member of physical education staff had to commit to taking part in rigorous assessments, she said.

“If one person would have said, ‘I don’t want to do this.’ We couldn’t have even tried this,” Chesterfield-Stanton said. “It really was an awesome experience for us. Helena is considered one of the leaders in the state in physical education.”

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“It was a great experience for us … just working as a group and being solid as a team,” Loomis said of winning the award.

She said that she and her co-workers are a successful team because they complement each other’s strengths and weaknesses.

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