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Resolution to Implement Quality Physical Education in NM Schools

  WHEREAS:  Twenty four percent of high school students in New Mexico are overweight or at risk of overweight. (1) In 2000, 15% of U.S. children aged 6 to 11 were overweight and nearly 16% of adolescents were overweight, double and triple the rates 20 years ago. (2)

  WHEREAS:  Type 2 diabetes, previously considered an adult disease, has increased dramatically in children and adolescents. Physical inactivity, independent of obesity, is associated with an extensive range of health problems such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, certain cancers and osteoporosis. (3)

  WHEREAS:  In New Mexico, the annual cost of medical expenditures attributed to obesity is $324 million. (4) In the United States, the annual cost is $117 billion. (5)

  WHEREAS:  Students who participate in moderate to high levels of physical activity in school demonstrate better academic performance. (6)

  WHEREAS:  Thirty five percent of high school students don't participate in any regular physical activity. (7)

  WHEREAS:  Only twenty five percent of students are enrolled in daily physical activity. (8)

  WHEREAS:  Participation in all types of physical activity declines strikingly as age or grade in school increases. (9)

  WHEREAS:  The Surgeon General recommends that most children should accumulate 60 minutes of moderate physical activity most days of the week. (10)

  WHEREAS:  The school environment provides the best possible opportunity to educate children in the development of good health habits, including physical activity, which will offer lifelong benefits into adulthood.

  RESOLVED:  The undersigned organization agrees to join NM Action for Healthy Kids and the New Mexico Coalition to Promote Physical Activity and Nutrition, and the NM Pediatric Society in supporting the implementation of quality, daily physical education in NM schools.  The physical education program should be developmentally appropriate and provide physical activity of sufficient intensity and duration to enhance academic achievement of students while in school.  The focus of physical education should be on the development of the physically educated student.