Monday, February 27, 2012

Easy Steps for State-level Advocacy

There are a couple of important advocacy opportunities coming up that could have nationwide impact on physical education. PE, health and wellness, and sporting goods industry leaders will be going to Capitol Hill to educate Congress Members on the impact of quality PE and ask for their support.

SGMA’s National Health Through Fitness Day (NHTF Day) March 6-7th, 2012

NASPE’s Speak Out Day, March 28-29th, 2012

If you’re not able to participate in these events, there are ways you can get involved on a local level. NASPE is hosting a free “Advocacy 101” webinar on March 8th at 3:00pm. You can register for the webinar here.
We’ve also got John Baker from Des Moines Public Schools, back with his simple strategies for reaching his state-level policy makers, and his message to them.

You can view Mr. Baker’s strategies for advocating to parents here.

Click on the following links to find contact information for your
State Senators and Local Members of Congress.

To stay up to date on physical education / physical activity issues, bookmark AAHPERD Advocacy's Legislative Action Center.

Friday, February 24, 2012

PE Advocacy - Get Parents Involved!

Parents are a key group for you to engage as you promote your physical education program. It is important that parents understand the issues that surround childhood obesity and sedentary lifestyles, but also that your PE program plays a role in combatting these issues.

Keep in mind that many parents' only experience with PE while growing up may have been negative. It is important that we let them know how far PE has come, and that your PE program is helping to build a foundation of health and fitness that their child will take with them for a lifetime.

Phil Lawler always used to say, "There is nothing more powerful than a group of passionate moms!" It is time to get these "moms" on your side!

John Baker, Physical Education teacher from Hanawalt Elementary School in the Des Moines Public School District, shares examples of advocacy tactics that have been successful in his program.

In this video clip, Mr. Baker discusses how he advocates to parents. He says it is important to engage parents in an on-going basis to ensure that PE is always on the front burner in discussions.


  • Create a partnership with parents and let them know you are there to support whatever endeavor they are working on. You can begin doing this by joining the PTA.

  • Invite parents in to participate and volunteer in the physical education classroom, especially during fitness testing so they are aware of the crisis at hand.

  • Host regular family activities that parents and children can participate in together.

  • Engage parents on an on-going basis to ensure PE is always on the front burner in discussions.

  • Mr. Baker’s PE Program has been selected as a PE4life Model Site in Iowa. Mr. Baker was the IAHPERD President 1998-2001, IAHPERD PE Teacher of the Year in 2005 and IAHPERD Honor Recipient in 2004.

    Watch for additional video clips coming soon that highlight Mr. Baker’s physical education advocacy efforts with administrators , policy makers and state-level decision makers.

    NOTE: The KidStriders program that Mr. Baker discusses is a great program for schools. You can learn more about it here:

    Monday, February 20, 2012

    Your Voice Needs to be Heard!

    SGMA National Health Through Fitness Day (NHTF Day) is the culmination of a year round effort by the Sporting Goods Manufacturer’s Association and its many sponsors and volunteers to pass major U.S. legislation to “Get America Moving”.

    This is YOUR chance to get involved on a legislative level! Physical Education teachers are encouraged join forces with Sporting Good Industry Leaders, Physical Education advocates and Celebrity Athletes who support the cause as they meet with representatives on Capitol Hill to promote the Carol M. White Physical Education for Progress grant (PEP Grant), and the Personal Health Investment Act (PHIT).

    The 2012 National Health through Fitness Day is held on March 6-7th in Washington, DC. To learn more about 2012 National Health through Fitness Day or register to attend, go to

    If you’re not able to attend, you can still contact your local representative and ask them to support PEP and PHIT. Follow these links for templates, contact information and direct links to reach your local member of Congress:

    Contact Congress to Save PE Funding in the form of the Carol M White PEP Grant

    Contact Congress to support the PHIT Bill (H.R. 2649 PHIT)

    For contact information for your local member of Congress, follow this link and enter your ZIP Code.