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It’s really important for schools to provide quality physical education programs because a lot of students don’t get any exercise once they go home. So those 50 minutes may be crucial for many kids. It doesn’t need to cost a lot of money in terms of equipment or resources, but schools have to hire qualified PE teachers in the least. Schools need to provide fun activities for children so physical education isn’t a boring or tedious activity to get through, but rather something enjoyable.
A group of local lawmakers says it is time to whip City’s physical education programs into shape. Council members joined members of The Women’s City Club (WCC) and the American Heart Association to urge the Department of Education to bring its phys ed programs up to State mandates.
The WCC today released a report based on data collected by the City’s Independent Budget Office, which found large disparities in the amount of space per student available for PE. Simply put, certain schools do not have enough gymnasium, playground or dance room space as others. The report also showed about 25% of City schools that share space do not have enough time for physical activity than would be expected based on the size of their enrollment. Finally, the IBO found there is an insufficient number of teachers assigned to physical education classes, particularly at the elementary school level.
According to findings, the number of teachers needed to meet mandated elementary school standards is 1,174; the actual number of assigned teachers is 825. This means at least 350 more PE teachers would be needed to properly staff the City’s elementary schools. Also, of those teachers assigned to PE, only about half of them are licensed.
What’s your reaction to these findings? What is the physical education program like in your school? What can the DOE do to address the lack of space and time students spend in phys ed?
Reply with your thoughts using the link above.
Physical exercise for children is essential for both mind and body, especially given that kids nowadays spend so much time indoors playing video games, making the urgency of having PE in schools more important and necessary.
Maybe the kids should walk to school instead of taking a bus. That's natural exercise as compared to mindless kicking and jumping.
Once again Bloomberg is the culprit here. None of these programs should have been cancelled. You can't preach obesity and then on the other hand will have had all physical ed programs for these kids discontinued.
These kids also need social dancing, woodworking, and different types of art.
I still have a copper bracelet that my brother made for me in public school which is P.S. 83 in the Bronx. I treasure it.
One of my cousins that happens to live in up-state New York has a rocking horse that my brother made for her and she treasures it also.
Where is the knitting, crocheting, embroidery and social dancing.
TALK ABOUT BEING OUT OF TOUCH=HE HAS NO CLUE WHATSOEVER JUST HOW THE OTHER HALF LIVES.
Amongst all of these that are mentioned above at least one or two that I have mentioned including the physical ed classes that should never have been discontinued at all should have some sort of interest to these kids.
They are already into sports. So there is a selection for them and if they are not introduced to these other crafts, etc. they will never know about them. These can all be done after school. So now it has proposed and so follow through and decide which things will be during school hours and which will be sufficient in the after school hours.
GET A GRIP ON IT BLOOMBERG!!!
My elementary and middle school kids each have just one 50 minute gym class per week. I know their health & attention spans would benefit from more. They ARE fortunate, though, that their schools have adjacent play yards, so at least recess is a good daily exercise time (for those kids who choose to move around). I do think that the issue of not enough PE should be coupled with a look at the quality of cafeteria food and whether schools have any kind of health & nutrition classes. It is all of a piece in educating healthy children.
Our school shares space with another school and has limited gym time. Their swimming program is on hiatus until the bus strike is over.
I am a teacher in a high needs school in the Bronx. My 30 fourth graders don't get gym at all! Now that the weather is cold, they don't have recess either. They are out of shape and get winded just walking up to our classroom from the cafeteria. I would rate the physical education program in my school as poor. We only have one gym teacher and he doesn't do much with they kids. His job is a cushy one because he's chummy with the administration. We used to have two gym teachers. At that time, two classes could have gym during the same period. That's a distant memory now. As a solution, my principal suggested exercising in the classroom. I have so many students and so little space, that there's little room for desks, let alone physical activity in the classroom!
I am listening to your story about the lack of P.E. in elementary schools. I can't agree more that there is a real lack of addressing the required 30 mins daily. I wrote my son's school P.S. 53 at the beginning of the year about this issue. My son is a Kindergartener. I advocated that kids his age need daily exercise to focus better in the classroom as well as get fresh air. His school has kids walk only outside in a fenced area and play hula hoops or chalk, very passive versus physical activities. Many days they are kept inside in an auditorium watching age inappropriate shows such as I Carly. Ridiculous! The problem is more troublesome during winter or rainy days as there is no alternative to the auditorium. I visited p.s. 39 this week and they have a policy of having kids in an auditorium also for days with weather colder than 30F. My daughter attends a private preschool - St. John villa academy and the policy seems to be the same. We moved to Staten Island this summer and are shocked with the lack of PE in private and public schools especially for kids 5 years and under. I just can't imagine the logic of keeping kids focused and healthy without daily exercise. For these reasons, I have my kids taking sport classes in manhattan during the week, a real daily hardship to go back and forth but so necessary! Please address the issue especially in under serviced Staten Island!
Many thanks for the highly relevant story!
Physical Education at the elementary school level is neglected. Many of the students are being supervised by teachers that are not licensed in physical education. This is a tactic to save money by the schools and has been in practice over the last 10 years. Many parents would not be happy to hear that an English teacher is teaching their child's science class. Further more, New York City elementary schools do not even meet the New York State or the United States Surgeon General Standards for physical education or physical activity.
I work at a charter school. At many charter schools children including kindergarten and 1st grade do not get PE. And even more shocking they do not get recess everyday where they get to run and play.
Having gone to a private school since kindergarten inthe city, we had PE everyday from kindergarten to 12th grade. None of us suffered from Any "childhood obesity." But with My brother, who went to public school , I've observed the incredible difference in percentage of overweight kids because of the lack of PE, especially at an early age.
Kids must have PE, everyday in public and private institutions.
the education mayor doesn't care about phys ed, art or music, things that enrich children's lives and helps them to learn better. he tries to cure childhood obesity by banning large sugary drinks instead of beefing up phys ed in the schools. what hypocrisy!
Currently, several of the small schools bloomberg has created dont even have a gym. Then, students are allowed to credit recover phys ed classes by writing about sports. Lastly, special ed kids are taken out of phys ed for extra help instead of creating a free period for them. As much as the small school movement has helped create a sense of community, it has hindered resources and teacher networking.
To add, most small schools dont even have locker rooms. The kids cant event change for PE. How can they work out in boots tomorrow or ever? How can we expect the females to run hard with skirts?
Personnel licensed to teach Physical Education, Science and Math are few. They are called shortage license areas. Well rounded programs in NYC schools are sadly limited.
I have gym everyday at my high school
I feel that this has been going on for years, kids are being robbed of programs like Physical Education, Music, Etc... cutbacks year after year because of the so-called budget reasons, even the food in schools are unhealthy. Whether if its Mayor Bloomberg or any other Mayor really need focus on this matter ASAP and hire good teachers to fulfill this matter, our kids need it PERIOD!!!
Phys. Ed. is only the tip of the ice berg, as I hear kids demanding sugary snacks as soon as they get out of school.
There is a problem. There is practically no gym, and most kids do not venture outside to play in the parks or the neighborhoods. Worrying about kids being outside, be it in the park or the block, has made staying indoors a lifestyle occupied by video games. Limited movement is very unhealthy physically and socially.
I NEVER used to think that the school day should be extended because, how much time is needed to accommodate new additions to curricula? Now, I am a changed person. I now believe the school day needs to be extended by 30 minutes so that physical education can be reincorporated. When I was a kid we had gym very often. On top of that, I was a very physical person so when I wasn't studying I was outside playing around, engaged in some neighborhood kid's games, as were my friends.
We must make kids kids again. Get your kids outside moving. Even if it is only for those same 30 minutes that should be in school. Parents are tired, working, or both. But it is worth knowing your kids are not sedentary- it's good for them.