Physical activity in schools is defined as any movement or exercise that takes place outside of a physical education class. Research shows that students who engage in regular physical activity are healthier and better learners. “Evidence suggests that increasing physical activity and physical fitness may improve academic performance and that time in the school day dedicated to recess, physical education class, and physical activity in the classroom may also facilitate academic performance” (Institute of Medicine, 2013). Examples of school-based physical activity include but are not limited to walking or biking to/from school, classroom physical activity, recess, interscholastic sports, and before- or after-school activity programs.
Physical Activity Guidance
Physical Activity Guidelines for Vermont Schools - Active Students are Better Learners was created to help school personnel interpret and implement a new requirement for physical activity in Vermont schools. This requirement was included in the Education Quality Standards, State Board of Education Rule 2000.
“Each school shall offer options for students in grades K-12 to participate in at least 30 minutes of physical activity within or outside of the school day. Physical activity may include recess and movement built into the curriculum but does not replace physical education classes.” (p. 6)
Comprehensive Health Webpages
- Healthy and Safe Schools focuses on creating healthy, safe, and supportive school learning environments using the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model (WSCC), School Health Profiles and the Youth Risk Behavior Survey.
- Health Education focuses on the implementation of comprehensive Health Education programs defined by Vermont law (16 V.S.A. § 131), the Education Quality Standards, and State Board adopted National Health Education Standards.
- Physical Education focuses on the implementation of Physical Education programs defined by Vermont law (16 V.S.A. § 136), the Education Quality Standards, and State Board adopted SHAPE America Physical Education Standards.
Free Resources for Physical Activity in Schools
- Active Academics
- Active Start: A Statement of Physical Activity Guidelines for Children from Birth to Age 5
- Classroom Physical Activity Ideas and Tips
- Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program (CSPAP)
- Fuel Up to Play 60
- Go Noodle
- Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (2nd edition)
- Vermont After-School and Summer Programs
- Vermont Safe Routes to Schools