Theory and practice of mobilizing school communities ti promote healthy, active lifestyles: the canadian experience

Por: Deanna Binder.

Athens 2004: Pre-olympic Congress

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Introduction

In October 2003, the Canadian Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (CAHPERD) provided an opportunity for representatives of all of the provincial and territorial initiatives to promote active, healthy schools and communities to a forum to share information with their colleagues, government representatives, education experts and international observers. The Canadian experience, summarized in this presentation, provides insights into how federal and provincial or state authorities are beginning to work together to address issues of obesity and sedentary lifestyle within the education sectors of their jurisdictions. The presenter, a Member of the Board for (CAHPERD), and the author of the evaluation report for the Alberta Ever Active Schools program, will briefly categorize current provincial and national trends and raise questions about the challenges of conducting valid evaluations of school and community intervention programs.

Significance of this Presentation

In Canada, according to CAHPERD 1/3 of schools offer formal physical education. This is a world-wide trend. According to the World Health Organization, less than 1/3 of young people are active enough to benefit their health. As a result our children face, not only a physical activity crisis, but also a looming health crisis. Implementing and evaluating intervention strategies to change the values and behaviours of children regarding physical activity and nutrition requires complex program implementation and evaluation strategies. The world’s educators need to learn from each other.

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