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The Southern District AAHPERD, and the 13 states comprising the District, have been very busy with advocacy issues over the last year. Below are some of the highlights from the District.
Southern District AAHPERD Advocacy:
Karen Dowd and Sandra Sims are facilitating a preconvention workshop on advocacy report cards in Greensboro, North Carolina. In addition, an advocacy session was presented at the Southern District AAHPERD Student Leadership Conference at East Tennessee State University in September of 2010.
ASAHPERD will host a Board of Directors meeting in our capital city, Montgomery, in March 2011. After our BOD meeting, we will have an Advocacy Day where we will introduce ourselves to the new Senators and Representatives. Each legislator will be given a packet of information on ASAHPERD’s mission and vision for Alabama.
HB 229 Student Health and Physical Education Act requires an annual fitness assessment once a school year for students in grades one through 12, to be conducted only during a physical education course. In addition, the State Board of Education unanimously approved the new Georgia Performance Standards for Physical Education. Statewide training will occur during the 2009-2010 school year with implementation during the 2010-2011 school year. The State Board of Education also unanimously approved the new Georgia Health Education Performance Standards in February 2010.
The North Carolina General Assembly continued its progressive reform to improve the school’s physical education and health programs with passage of HB 1757 Fitness Testing in Schools. If signed by the governor, the bill would accompany HB 901 Honors Courses in Healthful Living Classes, which prepares college-bound high school students for highly skilled careers in allied health, exercise science, education and public health. HB 1757 provides a mandate for evidence-based fitness testing in K-8 schools.
“This is a huge step in the right direction. Fitness testing will give us the first clear and comprehensive perspective of childhood obesity, so students, parents, teachers, school administrators, and policy makers can better understand the problem and allocate resources where they are needed most,” said North Carolina Alliance for Athletics, Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (NCAAHPERD) Executive Director Dr. Ron Morrow.
Many schools are expected to comply with the new mandate through participation in NCAAHPERD’s In-school Prevention of Obesity and Disease (IsPOD), a multi-faceted obesity intervention and prevention program. IsPOD includes FitnessGRAM™, a fitness testing system used to measure the five layers of physical fitness, generate individualized student and parent reports, and submit data to the North Carolina State Center for Health Statistics. (The government research center is analyzing the data and will make it available in the future). More than half of the state’s schools are already participating in IsPOD; 95 school districts are scheduled to begin participating by the end of 2010.
HB 1757 and HB 901 cost the state and taxpayers zero. Schools can choose to offer honors health courses using existing staff and resources. The Department of Public Instruction has developed an honors level curriculum for one health course.
South Carolina AHPERD interviewed the two candidates running for Superintendent of Schools. Questions were asked regarding health, dance and physical education issues. Answers were posted on the web site so voters could form an opinion before election day.
Texas AHPERD is a founding member of the Partnership for a Healthy Texas. This group of 60+ non-profits and state agencies work together to focus their advocacy efforts on specifically identified issues of concern to all groups. This group has met several times during 2010 to develop the following legislative agenda.
© 2013 American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance