SB 210 Update

A few weeks ago I gave testimony on SB 210. I hope that HB 373 will better address the concerns that have been raised by school district’s throughout Ohio. Here is a quick update.

SB 210 passes Senate

The Ohio Senate passed Senate Bill (SB) 210 by a vote of 24-7. SB 210 requires schools to adopt a requirement that students participate in at least 30 minutes of moderate to rigorous physical activity per day. The bill provides that, due to an undue financial hardship, a school may apply for a waiver of the physical activity requirement. SB 210 provides for a waiver for schools to participate in the body mass index (BMI) screening. SB 210 will become the legislative vehicle for the Healthy Choices, Healthy Children Act.

Physical activity waiver

The physical activity requirement would become part of permanent law if SB 210 passes in its current form. The annual waiver included in the bill does not satisfy our concerns about its future implications for schools. A waiver implies that a school district has put off compliance but will at some point be able to implement the required mandate. The bill contains no funding mechanism for a future time when districts would need to comply.

The House Health Committee did have testimony on House Bill (HB) 373 last week and OSBA, the Ohio Association of School Business Officials, the Ohio Federation of Teachers and the Ohio Education Association provided testimony asking that the physical activity requirement be removed from the bill.