Senator Young Sponsors To Bill To Increase Physical Activity For Elementary School Students

It was heard before a committee on Tuesday.


Annapolis, Md (KM) More physical activity for children is the goal of a bill sponsored by Frederick County State Senator Ron Young (D). The legislation requires elementary schools provide 150-minutes each week of “developmentally appropriate, moderate to vigorous”   physical activity to students each week, including recess. In addition, the schools would also need to provide 90-minutes of physical education each week.

“We’re talking about a pandemic now in this country….obesity. I just saw something recently that they’re predicting that over half of Americans are going to be obese. And it is one of the largest causes of death and it may become the largest. It’s also a reason for our huge health bills in this country, much larger than anyone else,” says Young That quote comes from the Maryland Reporter, an on line publication.

Young spoke to the Senate Education, Health and Environmental Committee on Tuesday.

“Children need physical activity, I think even more so back when I was teaching because more and more they’re on their phones, their computers…and they’re just not going out for exercise. And aside from  health, other good things come from it: improved test scores and academic achievement and improved behavioral problems,” he said. That quote, again, comes from the Maryland Reporter.

Young was also joined at the Committee hearing by Jane Clark, the former dean of the University of Maryland School of Public Health in College Park, and Jill Whitall, professor emerita at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore.   Both spoke in favor of more physical activity for children.

During the hearing, Senator Young was asked by Committee Chair Senator Cheryl Kagan if he cold make his case to local boards of education to put this policy in place. He responded by saying the benefits of physical activity speak for themselves. “They need it  for their health. It improves their behavior. And it improves academic progress,” said Young. The quote was taken from the Maryland Reporter.

By Kevin McManus