Parents learn about proposed HISD recess policy

April 10, 2012 8:20:37 PM PDT
In this age of standardized testing, getting every bit of class time out of the school day is very important for educators. But HISD is about to vote on a new recess policy that the author says will help student performance in class while also helping combat the childhood obesity.

Kids playing at school does not bring to mind better academic performance. Most people just see kids running around the playground with friends as just play time. But one mother of four, Chrysi Polydoros, says studies show that students who have recess at school do better in class.

"Cognitive development is improved, your memory is improved, attention in the classroom is greatly improved," Polydoros said.

Polydoros helped draft a recess resolution for HISD after learning the district does not have a recess policy.

On Tuesday, Polydoros and school board trustee Anna Eastman spent time with parents discussing a proposed new policy. It guarantees 30 minutes of supervised recess each school day for elementary school kids, views recess as a needed component in education and points out that recess should not replace PE classes.

"They don't have the free time after school to play with each other anymore so just that activity, up , moving around, hopefully will help us in the fight against obesity," Eastman said.

The recess policy aims to help fight the nationwide epidemic of childhood obesity while also helping kids release nervous energy so they can focus in the classroom.

"I think the more physically active they are, I think mentally that also makes them stronger and more able to be present and able to learn," parent Renae Holman Murti said.

The HISD school board will vote on the recess policy Thursday. The policy is expected to be approved.

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