Communities across the country are seeking safe, accessible, and affordable places for children and their families to exercise and play. Los Angeles County is no different. Public schools have a variety of recreational facilities—gymnasiums, playgrounds, fields, courts, and tracks—where people can engage in physical activity. In some low-income communities, schools are often the only place to find safe and affordable recreation facilities. Unfortunately, these spaces are often locked and inaccessible to students and the community during non-school hours. Schools within Los Angeles County, however, are successfully embracing shared use1 as a strategy to create more opportunities for physical activity to improve the health outcomes of students and community members alike.
The team analyzed 20 different documents broadly defined as “joint use agreements.” The findings are displayed in this report, which provides a snapshot of the relative strengths and weaknesses of all 20 agreements through analysis and case studies from neighborhoods in the Los Angeles area.