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April 25, 2005
Introduced by Reps. Harrell, Wilkins, Townsend, Leach, Bales, G.R. Smith, J.R. Smith, Battle, Cobb-Hunter, Neilson, Clark, Harrison, Skelton, Moody-Lawrence, Rice, Harvin, Ott, J.E. Smith, Merrill, Mack, Hinson, Cotty, Norman, Talley, Chellis, Hardwick, Clemmons, Bailey, Dantzler, Walker, Cooper, E.H. Pitts, Ballentine, Bowers, Huggins and Hagood
S. Printed 4/25/05--S. [SEC 4/26/05 2:44 PM]
Read the first time April 18, 2005.
TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING CHAPTER 10, ENTITLED PHYSICAL EDUCATION AND NUTRITIONAL STANDARDS, TO TITLE 59 SO AS TO ESTABLISH PHYSICAL EDUCATION AND NUTRITIONAL STANDARDS IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS, TO PROVIDE FOR THE AMOUNT OF PHYSICAL EDUCATION INSTRUCTION A STUDENT IN KINDERGARTEN THROUGH FIFTH GRADE MUST RECEIVE EACH WEEK ON A PHASED-IN BASIS, PROVIDE FOR A MEASURE OF EFFECTIVENESS OF THE PHYSICAL EDUCATION PROGRAM IN ALL PUBLIC SCHOOLS, PROVIDE FOR A PHYSICAL EDUCATION ACTIVITY DIRECTOR, PROVIDE CERTAIN NUTRITIONAL STANDARDS FOR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS, PROVIDE THAT ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS SHALL REMOVE CERTAIN FOOD AND DRINKS FROM VENDING MACHINES, PROVIDE THE MINIMUM AMOUNT OF TIME ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS MUST HAVE TO EAT LUNCH, PROVIDE FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A DISTRICT LEVEL AND AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL LEVEL COORDINATED SCHOOL HEALTH ADVISORY COUNCIL AND PROVIDE ITS POWERS AND DUTIES, PROVIDE FOR NUTRITIONAL EDUCATION, AND PROVIDE A MEASURE OF EFFECTIVENESS OF HEALTH EDUCATION PROGRAMS.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. This act may be cited as the Students Health and Fitness Act of 2005.
SECTION 2. Title 59 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 59-10-10. The General Assembly finds that:
(1) South Carolina is ranked among the highest in the nation in obesity rates.
(2) Three out of every five adults in our State are either overweight or obese.
(3) Fifty percent of obese children will become obese adults.
(4) Only two percent of school-age children meet the recommended minimum number of servings for all five food groups on the classic food pyramid.
(5) Twenty-five percent of children ages five to ten have high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or other early warning signs of heart disease.
(6) The National Institute of Health research shows that inactivity has major implications on a child's academic performance.
(7) The Centers for Disease Control report that for the first time in over one hundred years the current generation of people will have a lesser life span than the previous generation due to a sedentary lifestyle.
Section 59-10-15. (A) The certified physical education teacher to student ratio is designed to provide students in kindergarten through fifth grade scheduled physical activity by a certified physical education teacher either every day or on alternate days throughout the school year. The goal of this article is to provide every elementary student with the equivalent of thirty minutes of physical education daily.
(1) Beginning with the 2005-06 school year, the student to certified physical education teacher ratio in the elementary schools of the State must be 700 to 1.
(2) Beginning with the 2006-07 school year, the student to certified physical education teacher ratio in the elementary schools of the State must be 600 to 1.
(3) Beginning with the 2007-08 school year, the student to certified physical education teacher ratio in the elementary schools of the State must be 500 to 1.
(B) The physical education instruction taught by certified physical education teachers employed pursuant to subsection (A) must be based on the South Carolina Physical Education Curriculum Standards and the weekly minutes of instruction must be distributed in a developmentally appropriate manner for each grade level. The student to teacher ratio in a physical education class may not exceed the average student to teacher ratio of 28 to 1. An individual student's fitness status must be reported to his parent or guardian during a student's fifth grade, eighth grade, and high school physical education courses.
(C) Each district shall make every effort to ensure that the schools in its district have age appropriate equipment and facilities to implement the physical education curriculum standards.
(D) During each year of implementation of the reduced student to physical education teacher ratio, each district shall report to the State Department of Education by June 15, the number of minutes of physical education instruction students receive daily with a total for the week. The report must be listed by elementary school and by individual class and grade level. The State Department of Education shall report this information to the General Assembly by August first of each year of implementation.
Section 59-10-20. Each public school in this State shall administer the South Carolina Physical Education Assessment. Assessment of students in second grade, fifth grade, eighth grade, and high school must be used to assess the effectiveness of the school's physical education program and its adherence to the South Carolina Physical Education Curriculum Standards. The State Department of Education shall develop a procedure for calculating a district and school physical education program effectiveness score. The district and school physical education effectiveness score must be reported to the education community through the district and school report card.
Section 59-10-30. The physical education teachers in a school that receives an unsatisfactory program effectiveness score pursuant to Section 59-10-20, will be provided professional development activities designed to assist it in improving its programs' effectiveness.
Section 59-10-40. Each elementary school shall designate a physical education teacher to serve as its Physical Education Activity Director. The Physical Education Activity Director shall coordinate opportunities for additional physical activity for students and teachers that exceed the designated weekly student instruction times that may include, but not be limited to, before, during, and after school dance instruction, fitness trail programs, intramural programs, bicycling programs, walking programs, recess, and activities designed to promote physical activity opportunities in the classroom. The director annually shall submit to the principal a report outlining the additional physical activities for students and teachers.
Section 59-10-50. The implementation of decreased student to teacher ratio and increased instruction in physical education pursuant to Section 59-10-10 is not intended to replace or reduce time dedicated to instruction in the arts taught by certified arts specialists.
Section 59-10-210. (A) The General Assembly finds that one goal of public education is to assist all students in reaching their full academic potential. In this regard, school nurses:
(1) are instrumental in early detection of health problems that can interfere with learning or lead to more serious or disabling health conditions;
(2) prevent disease by teaching and encouraging healthy lifestyles and habits that have lifelong implications for children and their families;
(3) provide valuable health services, including administering medications and care management necessary for those students who have chronic or episodic health conditions and disabilities;
(4) care for students who incur injuries at school including injuries that require medical attention;
(5) assist families and students in accessing health care and procuring community health services;
(6) contribute to a child's ability to learn by improving overall health, therefore encouraging school attendance, readiness to learn, and enhanced learning potential and achievement; and
(7) provide direct health services and professional advice to teachers and staff members regarding health problems and concerns.
(B) The General Assembly believes that each elementary public school in this State should have a full-time school nurse.
Section 59-10-220. Beginning with the 2006-07 school year, the General Assembly, annually in the General Appropriations Act, shall appropriate funds to the Department of Education for providing licensed nurses for elementary public schools. The State Department of Education shall make these funds available through a grant program and shall distribute the funds to the local school districts on a per school basis.
Section 59-10-310. In an effort to promote optimal healthy eating patterns, the State Board of Education by policy shall establish requirements for elementary school food service meals and competitive foods based upon the recommendations outlined in the State Department of Education Task Force on Student Nutrition and Physical Activity Report.
Section 59-10-320. (A) The State Department of Education is encouraged to make available to the school districts of the State an age-appropriate, proven-effective nutrition education curriculum aligned with the South Carolina Health and Safety Education Curriculum Standards.
(B) The State Department of Education shall make available to each school district a coordinated school health model designed to address health issues of children. The program must provide for coordinating the following eight components: safe and healthy environment, physical education, health education, staff wellness, health services, guidance and psycho-social health, nutrition services, and parent and community involvement. The Department of Education shall notify each school district of the availability of professional development opportunities and provide technical assistance for implementing the coordinated school health model.
(C) The Department of Education shall develop or adopt an assessment program to evaluate district and school health education programs. At a minimum, the assessment must be designed to determine program effectiveness and adherence to South Carolina Health and Safety Education Curriculum Standards. The State Department of Education shall begin piloting health education assessments in the 2006-07 school year with full implementation in all schools in the 2008-09 school year.
Section 59-10-330. (A) Each school district shall establish and maintain a Coordinated School Health Advisory Council (CSHAC) to assess, plan, implement, and monitor district and school health policies and programs, including the development of a district wellness policy to begin implementation in the 2006-07 school year. The council must be composed of community and school representatives from the following areas:
(1) physical education;
(2) nutrition services;
(3) health education;
(4) health services;
(5) counseling, psychological, and social services;
(6) local health department;
(7) school administration; and
(8) other individuals to include students, parents, district food service employees, and school board members.
(B) Each district, in collaboration with the CSHAC, shall develop a school health improvement plan that addresses strategies for improving student nutrition, health, and physical activity and includes the district's wellness policy. The district health improvement plan goals and progress toward those goals must be included in the district's strategic plan required pursuant to Section 59-20-60. Health improvement plans must be submitted to the Department of Education and must include a timeline for implementation beginning July 1, 2007. Progress reports on implementation must be provided annually to the department until implementation is complete.
(C) Professional development in health and safety education, to include nutrition education, must be provided to teachers in kindergarten through fifth grades annually.
(D) Each school board of trustees shall establish health and nutrition policies for its elementary schools designed to limit vending sales and sales of foods and beverages other than school meals, except for sales of milk, juice, entrees, bread, fruits, vegetables, and a food item that is considered a meal component.
Section 59-10-340. Each elementary school shall establish and maintain a school-level Coordinated School Health Advisory Council with membership representing areas outlined in Section 59-10-340 (A). Each school shall use the assessment tool made available by the State Department of Education to assess current school health programs using the state assessment model, develop a plan to improve health programs, assist in the implementation of the improvement plan, and monitor and evaluate the school health programs. The school health improvement plan goals and progress toward those goals must be included in the school's strategic plan required pursuant to Section 59-20-60.
Section 59-10-350. (A) An elementary school may not provide to students at any time during the school day foods of minimal nutritional value. However, this policy does not restrict the food that a parent or guardian may provide for his child's consumption at school. A school district board of trustees may adopt a more restrictive policy.
(B) Each elementary school shall remove food, soda, and carbonated vending machines from public areas. However, beverage vending machines selling only products that contain one hundred percent fruit juice or bottled water, and food vending machines selling only products that meet state and USDA guidelines as a healthy snack may be located in public areas. Each district's Coordinated School Health Advisory Council established pursuant to Section 59-10-340 shall determine which snacks may be sold in vending machines in elementary schools.
Section 59-10-360. Each elementary school shall provide students a minimum of twenty minutes to eat lunch once they have received their food. In determining the total length of the lunch period, time to and from the cafeteria, time to go through the line, and time to bus trays at the end of lunch must be considered.
Section 59-10-370. Students in kindergarten through fifth grade shall receive nutrition education weekly as a part of health and safety education instruction.
Section 59-10-380. Each phase of implementation of this chapter is contingent upon the appropriation of adequate funding as documented by the fiscal impact statement provided by the Office of State Budget of the State Budget and Control Board. There is no mandatory financial obligation to school districts if state funding is not appropriated for each phase of implementation as provided for in the fiscal impact statement of the Office of the State Budget of the State Budget and Control Board.
Section 59-10-390. Nothing in this article may be construed to prohibit or limit the sale or distribution of any food or beverage item through fundraisers by students, teachers, or groups when the items are intended for sale off the school campus."
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.
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