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Breaking News: AHA-Funded Report Finds Only 20% of States Measure PE Accountability

While every state requires schools to incorporate physical education (PE) into their curriculum's, a recent study found that only 11 states have accountability systems in place to measure student outcomes.


The American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Council on Exercise funded the “Status of State-Level Physical Education Accountability Policy and Systems,” a study that asked all 50 states and Washington, D.C. to report what, if any, structures they had in place to monitor student learning in PE.

Of the 51 inquiries, 48 responded, and only 11 – Connecticut, Delaware, D.C., Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, New Mexico, Ohio, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia – measured student outcomes. That said, the accountability methods weren’t standard across all jurisdictions, which makes it difficult to compare the data side-by-side. California, South Dakota and Vermont didn’t reply to researchers at all.

While it’s disappointing that nearly 80% of states don’t assess PE accountability, the encouraging note is that it doesn’t have to stay this way. The report’s authors encourage states can take the initiative in developing state and local systems for accountability that promote student learning.

You can read the 48-page “Status of State-Level Physical Education Accountability Policy and Systems” report online.

Help us share the news 

  • While #ESSA requires that students take #PE, an @American_Heart study finds that only 20% of states are monitoring the subject’s development and implementation. Learn why this could be problematic here:

Want to make PE accountability a priority in your community? Check out our Exercise Their Minds toolkit.