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Inaugural Play It Forward Grant, Awards Celebrate Getting Kids Active

Oregon Sports Awards is proud to announce the launch of the inaugural Play It Forward Award and Fund, sponsored by Nike and Providence Health & Service. Nike and Providence are committed to helping kids be physically active as an integral part of building healthier communities, and are partnering to recognize and award outstanding efforts to get kids moving in Oregon. Unfortunately, fewer and fewer kids have the opportunity today to…

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Play It Forward Award Fund Announced

Positive experiences in sport and physical activity are critical to developing healthy kids and building healthy communities. That’s why as part of the Play It Forward Award, presenting sponsors Nike and Providence have also donated a combined $50,000 to kick start the new Play It Forward Award Fund managed by the Oregon Sports Authority Foundation. The Play It Forward Award Fund supports nonprofit organizations that are providing access to physical…

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Foundation Awards Healthy Youth Oregon Grant to Grout Elementary

The Oregon Sports Authority Foundation awarded a $10,000 grant to Grout Elementary in Southeast Portland at a student assembly this afternoon. The grant is part of the foundation’s Healthy Youth Oregon initiative, which awards $10,000 grants to support projects that provide opportunities for student participation in physical activities. This grant will allow Grout Elementary students to experience the benefits of Playworks, a nationwide non-profit organization that provides full-time “coaches” to…

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Video: Healthy Youth Initiative in action at Franklin High

The first Healthy Youth Initiative grant was awarded in September to Franklin High School, and is now funding a new intramural sports program. The intramural program is free to students and the $10,000 received is helping to purchase sports equipment, as well as provide instructors, incentives and prizes. Click below to watch the video.

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Foundation seeking applicants for Healthy Youth Initiative

The Oregon Sports Authority Foundation announced today it will begin accepting applications for its next Healthy Youth Initiative grant. The grant will award $10,000 toward a project that will engage student participation to support at least one of the following goals: increased physical activity/education in school; after school sports opportunities; and/or increased opportunities for youth to safely walk or bike to school. The grant can be used to help launch…

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Video: School board saves PE

Physical Education in Portland Public Schools won’t be cut completely after all, board members and the superintendent agreed Monday night. District leaders modified the proposed budget and said PE will still likely face cutbacks and shortened schedules. All this after teachers, students and board members made it clear that PE was just too important to give up. — Click below to watch the story on KGW.com

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Coalition releases poll: Portlanders support PE in schools

A coalition of health, education and business leaders, Save Portland PE, today released the results of a poll conducted over the last weekend by Davis, Hibbitts, & Midghall, Inc., which shows that 86 percent of Portlanders overwhelmingly oppose eliminating PE in elementary and middle Portland Public Schools as part of the district’s budget cutting. The Oregon Sports Authority Foundation on behalf of the Coalition commissioned the poll. Last week, Portland…

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Help save Portland PE

In Portland, nearly 1 in 4 children are overweight or obese. The Portland School Board is now considering eliminating physical education in elementary and middle schools. These are difficult times, but the decision to cut PE will have a lasting impact on kids’ lives today and into adulthood. At a time when America faces an epidemic of childhood obesity, cutting access to PE only makes things worse. Please encourage the…

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Schools try to reduce playground conflicts

Recess at many public schools isn’t what it used to be. Many schoolyard games – such as tag – have been discouraged because kids play too rough and the conflicts carry over into class time afterward, educators say. “We haven’t played tag for a long time,” says Tamala Newsome, principal at Rosa Parks School in North Portland. “If someone gets pushed down, it’s not intentional but you can’t spend time…

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Playworks to expand to Portland

Playworks will bring its trademark brand of safe and inclusive play to eight Portland Public Schools when classes start up after the summer break. The debut marks Playworks’ entry into the Pacific Northwest, where its team of trained, caring program manager “coaches” will lead recess and class game times, and very likely support a considerable amount of indoor recesses. Formerly known as Sports4Kids, Playworks provides coaches to support play and…

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Learning to play, an important lesson for schools

What is the most basic thing that kids should learn in school? How to read? How to do math? What about — how to play? In a time of extremely tight budgets, the Oregon school district with one of the  tightest budgets of all, may shell out for a program at the playground. Rob Manning saw that program in action in the Reynolds school district in east Multnomah County. You…

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Portland area schools make recess fun, safe

Deadra Hall is holding kids back — literally. Her arms splayed, the assistant principal blocks fifth-graders from entering the crowded playground. She makes them do multiplication tables, count by sixes and even spell a few words before lifting her arms and letting them pass in small groups. This is one of Hall’s many attempts to make recess at Woodlawn School more peaceful and organized. Kids seem to play instinctively and…

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10 Oregon schools receive state grant funding for PE training

In an effort to restore physical education (PE) to every school in the state, the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) awarded three Oregon school districts with grants to improve the quality of PE being taught in elementary schools. The 10 grants awarded on Friday went to: Ontario School District: Aiken Elementary, Alameda Elementary, Mary Roberts Elementary and Pioneer Elementary Sweet Home School District: Crawfordsville Elementary, Holley Elementary and Sweet Home…

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Physical education teacher hire grant application now available

The Physical Education Expansion (PEEK-8 grant) was established by the state to support activities related to meeting the Physical Education requirements for instruction of students in kindergarten through grade 8 as described in OAR 581-020-0250 (adopted December 6, 2007). The teacher hire component of this grant will enable school districts and public charter schools to hire licensed physical education teachers. The grant application is available at: http://www.ode.state.or.us/news/announcements/announcement.aspx?=3320 Grant applications are…

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Foundation honored for restoring P.E. in public schools

The Oregon Sports Authority Foundation was recently honored by the Physical Education for All Kids (PEAK) coalition in recognition of its advocacy and leadership in helping to restore physical education to Oregon Schools in the 2007 legislature.  Awards were given to Foundation director Owen Blank and Oregon Sports Authority Foundation CEO Drew Mahalic, as well as Julia Brim-Edwards of Nike.   “The Oregon Sports Authority Foundation was critical to the passage…

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K-8 physical education expansion grant application now available

The grant program created by the passage House Bill 3141 earlier this year to help provide funding to schools in meeting the new minute standards for teaching PE is now up and running. Grant applications are now being accepted by the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) through January 15th to provide professional development to teachers in meeting the minute standards. Grants will be awarded on February 15th.  Click here to…

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Now the real PE workout begins

After years of campaigning, a coalition of child health advocates had plenty to celebrate last week when Gov. Ted Kulongoski signed a bill to restore physical education in Oregon schools.   Now, however, it’s time to work up a sweat all over again.   The new law passed by the 2007 Legislature gives Oregon’s 200-plus school districts 10 years to meet new minimum standards for PE instruction. That creates a…

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Schools told to get kids moving

The legislature has told Oregon schools to restore physical education to keep children from getting too fat. It’s not clear how much of a difference the mandate makes. In Albany schools, for instance, middle schools already provide the amount of PE demanded by House Bill 3141, according to Maria Delapoer of the school district office. The bill, which Gov. Ted Kulongoski signed last week, gives schools 10 years to offer…

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Governor Signs PE Reform Bill

Representing a first step of many in restoring physical education to Oregon schools, Governor Ted Kulongoski signed House Bill 3141 into law today to arrest the obesity epidemic and the growing levels of inactivity of Oregon’s youth. The new legislation establishes a standard of 150 minutes per week or PE instruction for elementary and 225 minutes per week for middle school students to ensure that physical education is a component…

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P.E. bill clears the Legislature

The Senate on Tuesday gave final legislative approval to a bill that will require 2 1/2 hours a week of physical education in Oregon elementary schools. The requirement for middle school will be 3 hours, 45 minutes. The Senate passed the bill, House Bill 3141, on a 28-1 vote. “Today Oregon took a strong step toward fighting an epidemic” said Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, sponsor of the P.E. proposal.…

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Still time to tackle a weighty issue

Denise Martin of Vancouver had an excellent letter in The Oregonian’s June 13 edition. She described how much she and her family enjoyed watching the Grand Floral Parade during this year’s Portland Rose Festival, but how dismayed she was by something she couldn’t help noticing. “Too many of the kids twirling, cheering and trumpeting their way down our streets were carrying way more weight than is healthy,” she wrote, “and…

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Vote provides money for PE

A budget subcommittee approved legislation Wednesday that starts the ball rolling toward mandatory physical education classes for elementary and middle school students.The Ways and Means Subcommittee on General Government voted 6-2 for House Bill 3141, which would provide $1 million to launch the mandatory PE program: 2 1/2 hours a week in elementary school and 3 1/2 hours in middle school. School districts would not have to comply until 2017.…

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Physically Correct

If our legislators want to really make a difference in the lives of Oregonians, they can start by passing a trio of bills headed for the Oregon Senate. Simply stated, the bills are trying to reverse a trend of fat children. At the end, the bills will require a minimum amount of physical activity from each student each week, starting with kindergarten through eighth grade. It’s no secret. Our obese…

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Bring gym classes back to schools

Unless you are among the 30 percent of residents with a child enrolled in the Corvallis public schools, you might not know that gym class — as we who graduated from high school at least 15 years ago know it — has gone the way of the rotary dial phone. Most Oregon K-12 students either don’t have regular gym class or have just an hour a week, which strikes us…

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Legislature should restore PE

It’s not often that I get involved politically, but an issue affecting Oregon’s children compels me to speak out. During the past couple of decades, we have seen a decline in physical education classes as part of the school day in Oregon. It is no coincidence that this decline has coincided with a rise in obesity rates as well as kids having more problems concentrating in the classroom. We have…

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Bring PE Back to Oregon Schools

The Oregon Sports Authority Foundation is proud to be a driving force in the coalition that has introduced state legislation to reverse the trend of childhood obesity among Oregon youth.  House Bill 3141 will establish a minimum amount of participation in physical education for kindergarten through grade 8 public school students, and require the Oregon Department of Education to take inventory of how much physical education is being taught in schools.  Read more about…

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P.E. bills carry money with muscle

A yellow blob of simulated fat and a Nike basketball were prominently featured during testimony Tuesday on a bill that would require physical education classes for all Oregon elementary and middle schools. “They tell me this is a pound of body fat,” Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, said, holding up the blob for members of the Senate Education and General Government to see. “I find that frightening, considering how much…

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Put PE back in Oregon schools

We Oregonians need to take off our baggy sweat suits and take a good look at ourselves in the mirror. We’re not just pleasantly plump. We’re the chubbiest state west of the Rockies, with an adult obesity rate of 22 percent. Worse, a fast-growing percentage of our school-age children — nearly 25 percent in the most recent study — are obese or close to it. This trend must be reversed,…

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