Is Walking Between Classes Exercise? A New Tennessee Law Says No

With the new law, schools can no longer count walking between classes as exercise. Credit: dolanh via Flickr

With the new law, schools can no longer count walking between classes as exercise. Credit: dolanh via Flickr

This fall, Tennessee schools will no longer be able to count walking in between classes as exercise.

Since 2007, there’s been a law on the books that requires 90 minutes of physical activity a week for students.

But State Senator Bill Ketron was not happy that a quarter of schools were counting class changes. He says that’s skirting the law, so he sponsored the bill to modify it.

“I’ll just be frank about it, they were scamming it, because you have some teachers that might’ve been overweight or just lazy themselves, and not thinking about the end results of those kids later on in life.”

Ketron says the original spirit of the law was to fight childhood obesity by having teachers lead their students in exercises or other activities throughout the school day. He claims that not counting class transitions will send a strong message to schools that are slacking.

However, the Murfreesboro Republican could give no specific consequences if schools don’t meet the requirement—he says the Department of Education “leans pretty heavily” on them, but they will not loose funding.

Ketron declined to say which schools have been trying to avoid the law.

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