The First Tee Program gets boost from Arnold Palmer Invitational


Golf to be introduced to fifty elementary schools in Orlando

On February 3, educators from The First Tee National School Program will train OCPS elementary school physical education instructors on how to introduce their students to the game of golf during regular gym classes.

The four-hour training session will take place at 9 a.m. at Robinswood Middle School in the gymnasium in Orlando. Each participating school will receive a set of modified golf equipment specially designed for safely instructing children either in a gymnasium or on an outdoor playing field.

"The goal is to present the game of golf to the students at a young age the same way sports like basketball, baseball, football, and soccer are presented," said Scott Wellington, tournament director of the Arnold Palmer Invitational, which is helping finance the program along with the PGA TOUR. "We are hoping the program will build participation among the children of Orlando, the next generation of fans for the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the PGA TOUR." Fifty (50) elementary schools will receive the program over the next two years with over 20,000 elementary students participating!

The First Tee National School Program is an entry-level golf curriculum designed to be part of elementary school physical education programs. Taught by physical education teachers and based on national physical education standards, the National School Program is a safe, fun, and effective way to introduce school children to the basics in golf skills, etiquette and play. The program also includes the element of character education through the inclusion of The First Tee Nine Core Values (honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy and judgment).

"Through the National School Program we are able to expose a wide range of students to golf and its inherent values," said Joe Louis Barrow, Jr., executive director of The First Tee program. "As we expand each year to schools across the country, more and more children will learn this valuable life sport and have the choice to make it a part of their lives."

So far, the National School Program has introduced golf to some 490,000 children in 1100 schools across the nation.

About The First Tee
The First Tee ( is an initiative of the World Golf Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in St. Augustine, FL at World Golf Village, home of the World Golf Hall of Fame. Its mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing learning facilities and educational programs that promote character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf. Since its inception in 1997, The First Tee has opened over 250 golf-learning facilities in 46 states and five international locations, and has introduced the game of golf and its values to over 675,000 participants.

Scott Reid