Oregon Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance
E-Journal Spring 2005
Save the Date!
Fit, Healthy & Ready to Learn!
2005 Oregon Alliance of Health, Physical
Education, Recreation and Dance Annual Convention
October 14-15, 2005
Kelly Middle School
Please join us for a conference featuring:
- A Nationally Acclaimed Health Educator Keynote from Deborah Tackmann
- Six Elementary, Middle and High School Physical Education National Teachers of the Year
- Strategies for Advocating for Health & Physical Education
- Networking Sessions
- Fitness Opportunities
Book Your Hotel Room at the Phoenix Inn!
The Phoenix Inn in Eugene has offered us a reasonable rate of $79.00 single occupancy and $89.00 double occupancy for the evenings October 13th and 14th. Please call the Phoenix Inn at 541-344-0001 and mention the OAHPERD Convention to secure your room and this special rate.
Please contact at 503-282-4074 or email@example.com for more information.
It's just about time for Winter Break and at the end of January most of us will be half way through another year of teaching. January though also means the beginning of another legislative session and OAHPERD and associated organizations are already busily at work on legislative issues of concern to our profession. Through our continued relationship with the American Heart Association we now have the expertise of John Valley who will be in Salem to keep us apprised of that legislation. The Physical Education bill has already been presented to the Education Committee and been approved for presentation to the full Senate. This bill would mandate 150 minutes a week of Physical Education for Elementary students and 225 minutes a week for Middle School students. On December 2, Jess Lawrence Bogli, presented the first reading of the Oregon Health Standards Assessment Document to the State Board of Education with Kimo Mahi from Salem demonstrating how the assessments will be used. Thank you to all those people who have presented, testified, and demonstrated for all of over the past few months.
As you can see OAHPERD does more than just put on a great convention every year. I invite all of you to become more involved in OAHPERD and consider taking a leadership role. I can't tell how exciting it was to sit down at our fall Board of Directors meeting and see all the new, young faces there. Remember, our organization can only be as strong as its involved members. Of course we also need financing to continue our work and that brings me to an important point. I wonder how many of you know where OAHPERD gets the money to keep us going. First, there is membership. The more members we have the more money we have for our programs. Second, we have our convention, which brings in enough money to put on the next convention. A large share of our operating costs comes from the Jump Rope for Heart and Hoops for Heart events teachers across the state are involved in every year which are sponsored by the American Heart Association. Over the past few years we have seen a decline in participation in these programs and consequently a reduction in our income. Finally, OAHPERD is reimbursed money from AAHPERD for every member who is a member of both organizations.
This is only one of many benefits that AAHPERD provides its members. As a professional Health Educator and a former Physical Educator I have taken advantage of many of the programs offered by AAHPERD. The National AAHPERD Convention and Exposition has provided me with many opportunities to keep up-to-date in the fields of Health and Physical Education, allowed me to network with other professionals across the country, provided me with strategies to help me advocate for programs in our state and free and low-cost materials for distribution to parents and the community on the benefits of healthy lifestyles. Because of the decline in the number of AAHPERD members in the state of Oregon, we have lost one delegate who would have represented Oregon at Alliance Assembly as well as other matters that arise throughout the next year. I am hoping that by May 31, 2005, our AAHPERD numbers will exceed 200 so we can again have three delegates instead of two. We can only survive with your support.
By Theresa Hogue
Reprinted with the permission of the Gazette Times
INDEPENDENCE — Every morning at Independence Elementary School, the entire student body and teaching staff gathers in the gymnasium to participate in "Team Time," a short but invigorating period of dance, yoga, stretching and singing that builds community, teaches teamwork and gets little bodies and little brains warmed up for a day of learning.
Meg Greiner of Corvallis, who has devoted nearly two decades to developing strong young bodies and sharp young minds, leads Team Time each morning. This year, her work has been recognized not only by the teachers, students and parents who know her, but by a top state award that includes $10,000 to use in her teaching.
Greiner has received the Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year Award for Oregon and is now competing against 50 other teachers for the national prize of $25,000. Teachers of the Year are chosen because of their contributions to education and their impact on students, and are nominated by students and parents. They first compete at a local level, then go on to the state level. Finally, winners from all 50 states and Puerto Rico compete for the national award.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Greiner was a physical education
instructor at Mountain View Elementary School in Lewisburg and won
numerous awards there, including being named a distinguished teacher.
But in 1994, budget cuts eliminated Greiner's position, and she
eventually ended up at Independence Elementary. When Greiner was
a little girl growing up in the small Eastern Oregon town of Condon,
her favorite activities were sports-related or focused on some sort
of physical activity.
"I was always a health nut," she said. "I was the only sixth-grader to read her whole health text."
But she didn't have the same opportunities boys her age had to participate, and her parents had to fight to get her on boy-only teams. When she was turned down for the little league baseball team, her mother came to bat for her, telling the coach that since there was no softball team in town, Greiner should be allowed to play on the boys' team.
"She said, 'She can throw, run and catch better than any of these boys,'" Greiner recalled.
Before coming to Oregon State University, Greiner had no dreams of teaching. She wanted to devote her life to physical activity, but the only physical education instructors she'd ever known were frustrated teachers who wanted to be doing something else and who kept their students busy running laps and playing dodgeball. Greiner hated PE class, and it never occurred to her that it would be something she'd devote her life to.
But when she arrived at OSU, she naturally fell in with the physical education crowd because they shared her passion for sports and exercise. Eventually, she decided to become the kind of physical education teacher she never had as a child.
"I keep fighting for a quality physical education," she said.
Greiner graduated from OSU with a master's in movement studies, and after working for several school districts ended up in Corvallis before finally settling in the Independence School District, where she's been teaching PE at the elementary school for nearly a decade. She's currently the only physical education teacher in Oregon to receive national board certification, a process that took nearly a year of intense training and testing.
Studies show that introducing children to creative, dynamic physical education at a young age will encourage them to adopt healthy lifestyles as adults, Greiner said, which is one of the reasons she feels it's so important to provide quality physical education in grade school.
What Greiner hates to see is the same kind of standard PE popular in the 1960s and 1970s that adults often complain to her about, like dodgeball and running laps. In Greiner's classes, children rock-climb, juggle, unicycle and learn to compete with themselves, not each other. They're also taught very early not to make fun of others who may not be as physically skilled or graceful because teasing may prevent a child from enjoying or participating in class.
She includes reading, math and science in her curriculum because she believes the children learn better when combining their physical activities with their academic work. She said children learn work ethic, problem solving, motor skills, physical activity and healthy habits all in a 30-minute class period.
"Nowhere else do they get that in life," she said.
Greiner teaches nine classes a day, plus Team Time every morning and two after-school physical education classes each week. It leaves her little time at home, where a patient black Lab awaits her arrival for his evening walk.
She's using her $10,000 award to buy some physical education equipment for her classes and to pay for professional development, which allows her to attend conferences and learn the latest in mind-body connections and physical education advances.
"I was very lucky and very blessed," she said.
If she goes on to win the $25,000 award, she said she'd love to invite an expert to come to work with students on the connection between body and mind.
"You cannot disconnect the brain from the body," she said, and most children learn much better incorporating periods of activity in their study time.
"Movement activates brain chemicals, and exercise builds new brain cells," she said.
What thrills Greiner the most is the idea that the skills she's teaching young students may save their lives one day, may prevent them from choosing a lifestyle that will lead to cancer, heart attacks or obesity. If she can pass on a little of her love of physical activity to her students, she said, she's done her job. "I teach life."
By Abe Proctor
Of The Skanner
Perhaps the most important -- and most overlooked -- factor in a young person's education is his or her health. Regardless of the quality of a student's teacher, school and materials, they cannot effectively learn if they come to school hungry, tired or stressed. Past efforts to address the issue have been hampered by a lack of coordination among the many parties concerned with school health -- parents, teachers, nurses, food service workers, administrators and the like. Now a new program at Tubman Middle School, the Coordinated School Health model, offers a comprehensive approach to the problem. "Many times, including at this school, there's so many people trying to meet the needs of our students that nothing's really being coordinated," said Kathy Smith, a health teacher at Tubman and the head of the school's Coordinated School Health model. "What we decided to do, in order to meet the kids' needs, was . to bring health education together with P.E. and health services like the nurse and family counseling -- things that would help the staff and the students under three main topics. One is nutrition, another is exercise and the other is a tobacco prevention program."
The model is part of the Healthy Kids Learn Better Partnership, a statewide effort to help local schools and communities to "reduce physical, social and emotional barriers to learning." Tubman is the first middle school in Portland to offer the program; it is also in place at Benson High School. The partnership sees school health as essential to closing the achievement gap between poor and minority students and their usually better-off White counterparts.
"There's so much emphasis on doing better with test scores around the state," Smith said, "but the reality is that many times we need to look at the most basic issues, and that is -- what are the students getting to eat? Are they getting enough activity to promote their health?"
The whole idea of the Coordinated School Health model, Smith said, "is to combine all these pieces -- health education, family and community involvement, counseling, nutritional services, P.E. -- and coordinate it all so we're all working with each other, and realizing how to support each other instead of copying each other." Tubman applied for the Healthy Kids Learn Better grant last spring, and received the award this summer. Faculty and staff at the school are in the process of learning to coordinate their school health efforts, something that takes some getting used to, Smith said.
"We have to collect data, look at data that helps drive what the needs are here," she said, "whether it's supporting kids through after-school programs, designing . P.E. and health programs to help the nutrition and exercise pieces (of the model).
"We have worked really hard this year to look at our (physical) fitness," she added. "One of the first things we realized is that we need to get the kids up and moving more."
Part of addressing this need, Smith said, was to build on the success of a past program, the Bike Walk Skate Challenge, in which students are encouraged to "body-power" themselves to school. After arriving, they receive a healthy snack. Kids who participate earn points each time they walk, bike, skate or scoot themselves to and from school, and can redeem the points at the end of the two-week program -- in progress right now -- for prizes.
In terms of the tobacco prevention effort, Smith said, the idea is to combine traditional anti-tobacco education with support and counseling for students who are feeling social pressure to begin using tobacco and other addictive substances. Such intervention is critical because many people begin lifelong smoking habits when they're in middle school and high school.
On the nutritional front, Smith said she wants to ensure that healthy snacks and meals are always available to students, and to come up with an alternative to the soda vending machines currently on campus. She'd also like to see teachers who give candy to students as a reward for good work replace the sweet stuff with healthy treats. Also important to the idea of a comprehensive approach to school health is forming partnerships with community organizations, Smith added. She cited as an example a partnership between Tubman and the Bicycle Transportation Alliance that led to the Bike Walk Skate Challenge. She is also seeking members from the school and the community to serve on a health advocacy committee to identify concerns about school health and set goals to address them.
Students, faculty, staff and parents at Tubman have enthusiastically received the Coordinated School Health model, Smith said.
"They have been extremely open to hearing what we're finding out at this point," she said. "We've been walking around, having discussions with our students about what they feel their needs are. We know that if we have this coordinated health program in place -- I know some results from other schools around the country that have this -- a lot of good things happen. You see increases in performance, there's definitely a decrease in riskier behaviors. There's reduced dropout rates.
"More importantly, it's also bringing kids to a point where they feel supported here at the school. I really believe that many times that students need to know that they're cared about, versus just looking at a test score."
*Reprinted with permission from The Skanner Newspaper.
With the advent of a new year OAHE welcomes new members to its organization and its board. Having the distinct pleasure of meeting many of these individuals, I am inspired to see their excitement and dedication to both the field of health and to the Oregon Association for Health Education. I would like to thank the previous OAHE board and all the members who contributed to the advancement of Health Education over the previous year.
Interested members can learn more about their representatives on the OAHE board by examining the OAHE board biography page on this web site (coming soon).
President Elect................Kari Lim-Frank
Secretary/ Treasurer.......Jana Smith
Secretary Elect...............Anna Smith-Persson
Treasurer Elect...............Erin Nyseth
Board Member................Michelle Dahl
Board Member................Shannon Alley
Board Member................Alexa Prunella
Board Member................Stephanie Nolan
Student Representative...Rebecca Grinde
ODE Representative........Jess Lawrence
Recently OAHE board members met to discuss the strategic plan for the upcoming year. Goals from previous years were assessed; new goals and directions for the future year were evaluated; and a comprehensive new plan was instigated.
The four major goals for the coming year (as outlined in the OAHE strategic plan) are to increase and strengthen membership within the organization, advocate important issues within the field of Health Education, develop and strengthen professional affiliations, and to develop the OAHE web page (under the parent association web site of OAHPERD). These goals were set to provide service, offer opportunities, and facilitate networking among professionals.
The OAHPERD conference held last October brought together a variety of talented professionals in Health Education, Physical Education and other allied fields. Students and professionals had the opportunity make and renew connections and to attend a variety of valuable seminars. A team of individuals on the OAHE board is already putting together the Health side of next year's conference. Individuals interested in presenting in the October 2005 conference should contact the OAHE president elect Kari Lim-Frank.
I look forward to the coming year. I anticipate growth and progress in OAHE, and wish everyone the best in their personal and professional endeavors.
Jamie Tatum, M.S.
Oregon Association for Heath Education: President
Harrisburg Middle School Health & Technology
Western Oregon University Health Adj. Instructor
Many advocates for quality physical education and health education have been working on your behalf to prepare for the 2005 Oregon Legislative Session which opens in January. For those of you attending the Fall OAHPERD conference, you had the opportunity to hear updates on this work from John Valley (American Heart Association - Oregon Government Affairs Director) and Don Zehrung. (CCEPE and OAHPERD Advocacy Committee member).
If you have not seen the initial document prepared to introduce the Oregon 2005 Physical Education in Schools Act please refer to the Endorsement Form found in this issue. If you would like to add yourself or organization to the growing list of endorsers please complete the form and send it to the American Heart Association address found on the form.
The following briefly summarizes the advocacy activities that have happened to this point. The OCPPA (Oregon Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity) legislative policy team, of which OAHPERD is a part, has been meeting since Spring. Timelines for coalition building and media assignments are ongoing. Visits to Senator Peter Courtney and other legislators were made leading up to a very successful Senate Education Committee hearing held on September 28th. Thank you to all OAHPERD folks who shared time preparing for this significant action.
In October, policy team members had two significant meetings. The first was with the Oregon Department of Education and the other was with a member of the Governor's staff. The ODE was complimentary of the legislation and acknowledged the problem of childhood obesity and the positive difference schools can make in the fight of this epidemic. The governor's policy advisor on education cautioned us about the budget realities, but did not indicate opposition to the policy intent. There appears to be an increased appreciation of the obesity problem by the Governor's office.
What is next? In an attempt to organize outreach, the policy team is asking for committed folks to make contact with their legislators. Ideally, folks would meet with their district legislators for coffee or in their district office to deliver a one page flyer "Addressing Youth Obesity Through Physical Activity" and to ask for support of the Physical Education in Schools Act. The one page flyer and the list of current endorsers can be found in this issue.
If you are interested in helping to contact legislators, please contact one of the following people. You will receive the flyer, endorsement sheet, a frequently asked questions document and a lobby reporting form. Thanks in advance for your willingness to help!
Addressing Youth Obesity through Physical Activity
Addressing Youth Obesity Through Physical Activity
Oregon's youth are not getting enough physical activity
Increased physical activity reduces obesity
Increased physical activity helps academic performance
Solution: Ensuring students in elementary schools participate in physical education for 150 minutes per week, and that students in middle school participate in at least 225 minutes per week
For more information, contact John Valley at the American Heart
Physical Education in Schools Act
American Cancer Society
American Diabetes Association
American Heart Association
American Lung Association
Beaverton Education Association
Bicycle Transportation Alliance
Council for Children's Expanded Physical Education
Lane County Medical Society
Multicultural Integrated Kidney Educators
Oregon Academy of Family Physicians
Oregon Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance
Oregon American Association of University Women
Oregon Chapter of the American College of Cardiology
Oregon City Community Services
Oregon Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity
Oregon Diabetes Educators
Oregon Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports
Oregon Medical Association
Oregon Nurses Association
Oregon Pediatric Society
Oregon Recreation and Parks Association
Oregon School Based Health Care Network
Oregon Society of Physician Assistants
Oregon Sports Authority
Oregon State University IMPACT Board
Oregon Women's Rights Coalition Portland Parks and Recreation
Tualatin Hill Park and Recreation District
Upstream Public Health
Wilsonville Recreation Department
Woodburn Recreation and Parks Department
OAHPERD has recognized the importance of collaboration in its efforts to influence policy makers in the Oregon legislature. During the 2003 session our concerns about the threats to the curricular area of physical education and health education that were embedded in early drafts of HB 2744 were only deterred by very hard work from OAHPERD folks and members of other supporting coalitions such as Oregon Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity (OCPPA), Healthy Kids Learn Better (HKLB), Council for Children's Expanded Physical Education (CCEPE) and the Oregon Governor's Council for Physical Education and Sport.
With the vigilance of especially John Valley, Advocacy Director from the American Heart Association, the outcomes of the 2003 session were much less devastating than they could have been. In fact, the final version of HB2744 actually raised the status of Health Education in Oregon by listing it as one of those curricular areas that would maintain state recognized standards and benchmarks. (ODE health education state standards and benchmarks has been a legislative goal for OAHPERD for many years and HB2744 accomplished this.although through the backdoor.) For a more complete discussion of the drama of the 2003 legislative session refer to the 2003 Annual Report from the OAHPERD Advocacy Committee www.oahperd.com
Despite the one positive note as mentioned above, the rest of the composition of HB2744 could be described, in my opinion, as a funeral dirge for many of the positive advances that Oregon's Education for the 21st Century vision had accomplished. HB2744 blatantly served to promote the agenda of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) over the broader vision of educational reform that Oregon was well on the way to accomplishing. This was certainly the case in the area of physical education where the final version of HB2744 set back the state assessment requirement of the very positive PE bill (HB3307) passed in the 1999 legislative session.
So where do we go from here? Already underway are some very hopeful efforts to improve the quality of education for Oregon's young people. The Dept of Education is working hard on health education standards and benchmarks and strategies to disseminate their work to Oregon public schools. OAHPERD and the coalitions that support our goals are working hard on a 2005 legislative time line to move forward legislation currently referred to as the Physical Education in Schools Act.
Regarding the Physical Education in Schools Act, right now is the time for coalition building and identifying networks of support. Many potential organization endorsers are being contacted to add their voices to the demand for quality physical education programs in Oregon. Support from individuals is also very important. The following is one way that you can personally help. If you are interested in signing up for the OAHPERD Grassroots Support Network, please send contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail the form below to:
2022 NW Myrtlewood Way
Corvallis, OR 97330