“A lot of parents know their children are not going to be grandmasters,” says Jerry Nash, scholastic director of the U.S. Chess Federation. What these adults hope is that chess will be PE for the mind, strengthening the skills their kids use in the classroom.
Indeed, that’s the guiding principle behind New York’s biggest chess program, Chess-in-the-Schools (CIS), which offers free in-class chess instruction at 76 elementary and middle schools, reaching 20,000 kids. CIS has produced several national championship teams and inspired imitators in other local schools. It’s a scale of chess instruction matched nowhere else in the United States.
From "Chess for New York City Kids".