No wonder one in five New York City school kids is obese — they're not getting nearly enough exercise, found a new study.
According to New York state physical education requirements, students in kindergarten through third grade, for example, must participate in daily physical education for a total of at least 120 minutes each week.
But none of the 31 schools audited this week by the city comptroller's office offered students that much gym time.
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One school, P.S. 107 in Park Slope, doesn’t even have a gym.
“The DOE is failing gym,” City Comptroller John Liu said.
And instead of giving students the full two hours in gym class, the Department of Education has decided students can do “chair-areobics” in the classroom.
As part of it's “Move to Improve” program, which the DOE implemented two years ago, students take 10-minute breaks from class to perform exercises like the “Classroom Conga,” and “Jog in Place.” They do the exercises in class, not in a school gym. The curriculum is meant to help city schools meet the required 120 minutes per week.
"Move to Improve" is currently practiced in nearly 500 schools.
While the Department of Education did not dispute Liu's findings, they claimed that a survey of a handful of elementary schools is not necessarily representative of the nearly 1,700 schools across the city. But they did acknowledge shortcomings when it comes to gym class.
“We know we have more work to do in this area,” said Barbara Morgan, a spokesperson for the DOE.