Report: WI kids not getting enough P.E. in school - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Report: WI kids not getting enough P.E. in school

MADISON (WKOW) -- A new report shows Wisconsin kids are not getting enough physical education in school.

The report by the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network says the state fails to meet physical education standards when it comes to getting kids moving in schools to prevent childhood obesity and combat cancer. The report found Wisconsin did not measure up to benchmarks in the physical education time requirements category for elementary and middle school.

"Wisconsin clearly needs to do more to combat childhood obesity and strengthening the physical education requirements, especially among elementary and middle school students, is a critical component to reaching that goal," Allison Miller, Wisconsin government relations director for ACS CAN, said.
The recommended times from ACS CAN that schools should require for physical education each week is 150 minutes for elementary students, and 225 minutes for middle school students. ACS CAN recommends at least 50 percent of that class time should be spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity.

Currently, Wisconsin has no specified time period each week. The state only requires kindergarten through sixth grade students to have physical education three times a week and middle school students to have it just once a week. 
"Kids are in school at least eight hours a day making schools a natural place to address the alarming problem of childhood obesity and provide all children with skills that will carry through beyond the classroom and keep them active for life," Miller said. "By helping kids form healthy habits we can reduce the number of cancer diagnoses and deaths in Wisconsin and cut back the estimated $3.1 billion the state pays annually in obesity-related health care costs."

According to the report, Wisconsin's obesity rate has more than doubled since 1990, and without intervention, it's estimated more than half of all Wisconsin adults will be overweight within the next 15 years.

"Now is the time to take action and truly devote ourselves to tackling this problem," Miller said. "If we don't, we risk losing the progress we've made reducing cancer incidence and death. More importantly, we risk losing an entire generation to premature death from chronic disease."

To see how Wisconsin measured up in all categories, click here.
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