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The voice of the student.

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The Wave

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Should There be a Minimum Physical Education Requirement for High School Students?

Sports and physical activity are important for the health of students.
Elle Richardson
Sports and physical activity are important for the health of students.

Students at MIA participate in a varying level of physical activity that depends on numerous factors such as sports, physical education classes, and personal out-of-school efforts. In a recent poll released to Marco Island Academy students, students answered questions based on the general topic: Should some form of physical education be mandatory in high school? 

It is recommended that ages 13-17 get at least an hour of physical education. The goal of this poll question was to gauge a large range of opinions and data. This represents the diverse levels of exercise Marco Island Academy students do. Of the 83 students that replied to the poll, 26 were freshmen (31.3%), 22 were sophomores (26.5%), 21 were juniors (25.3%), and 14 were seniors (16.9%).

The information gathered from this poll gave me a wide variety of information when it came to what students participate in for exercise and how often it comes to inside and outside-of-school activities. A wide number of students are either currently in a physical education class or have taken one in the past (63.9%). Results showed that most students find taking physical education classes enjoyable (51.2%). Physical education classes at MIA are an hour and a half long meaning each student in those classes has participated in their recommended hour of physical activity per day. This is very beneficial to students’ overall physical and mental health as not only do students find these classes enjoyable, but they also release endorphins and produce serotonin. This increases mood and reduces stress. Almost 10% of students don’t spend any time doing physical activity per day, which negatively affects their health. 

The poll helped to gather other information on what most students’ eating habits are like. 64.7% of students said they have a healthy diet but 29.3% said they eat healthy everywhere but at school. This is a sign that the need for physical education is even more prevalent due to the lack of a healthy diet for students in school. A healthy diet is only beneficial if it is paired with a good amount of physical activity. 

Currently Florida public schools only require one credit for physical education. Although it may be difficult to change the overall Florida school board policies it would be easy to implement more classes for high students schedules that induce more physical activity. In this poll, 36.1% of students haven’t even taken a PE class yet so if there is a rule to influence this there will be some major benefits to students health which is the overall goal.

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Collette Combs
Collette Combs, Staff Writer
Collette Combs is a senior at Marco Island Academy and a Staff Writer for The Wave. In her free time, Collette enjoys cheering, dancing, and going to the beach with friends in her convertible. She loves anything to do with music, traveling, and clothes. After high school, she plans to study business entrepreneurship to become a CEO or own her own business and get rich. 
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