Establishing healthy behaviors during childhood is easier and more effective than trying to change unhealthy behaviors during adulthood. Schools play a critical role in promoting health and helping children establish lifelong healthy behaviors. Research shows a link between health and academic success as well as other aspects of well-being. To have the most positive impact on health outcomes, schools, government agencies, community organizations, parents, and other community members must work together through a collaborative and comprehensive approach that utilizes the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program (CSPAP) models.
Physical education and physical activity is one component of the WSCC model. Active Schools, CDC, SHAPE America and others experts recommend implementation of a comprehensive school physical activity program (CSPAP), a multi-component approach by which school districts and schools use all available opportunities for students to be physically active, meet the nationally-recommended 60 minutes of physical activity each day, and develop the knowledge, skills, and confidence to be physically active for a lifetime.