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Physical Education Gets Government Support

The study discussed in the “Exercise in Schools” item in the Making News column of the March 2016 issue of IDEA Fitness Journal, called for more physical activity in schools. A new bill passed by the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives might make that a possibility.

This past December, President Obama signed S. 1177, which allows for a reorganization of scholastic focus and places emphasis on physical education as an important component of a well-rounded curriculum. This provides schools with greater access to more grant money for PE programs.

“The bill also improves how physical education grants are distributed, and will lead to more schools getting more money, particularly the low-income schools that need it most,”
stated a press release from the American Heart Association.

While PE programs aren’t yet rolling in dough, says Colin Schwartz, senior nutrition policy associate for the Center for Science in the Public Interest, the new bill is good news and could pave the way to boosting activity levels in schools.

“These are funding opportunities that were once never available for physical education, and just a few short months ago, [they] looked like they wouldn’t be available for physical education at all,” he explains. “With capitalizing on regulatory opportunities and aggressive state and local advocacy, there is tremendous opportunity here to get more quality physical education in our schools.”

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