The Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association (SGMA) and supporters of physical education are applauding the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee for taking a stand for physical education in schools. The committee approved $78.693 million for the Carol M. White Physical Education (PEP) Program in the U.S. Department of Education budget.
The PEP Bill, founded by SGMA, funds a competitive grant program to give school districts and community-based organizations resources to provide students with quality, innovative physical education. With access to PEP grants, school districts are able to cultivate future generations of active Americans through innovative physical education programs.
The Senate Appropriations Committee approved a bill that funds the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services and Education for Fiscal Year 2013. The bill now awaits full consideration by the U.S. Senate.
“We have been working closely with many leaders in the Senate. By supporting PEP funding, the Senate sends a strong message about the value of PEP as an important solution in the fight against obesity," said SGMA President Tom Cove. “SGMA has long supported the improvement of physical education in our schools as a real solution to reversing obesity and improving the health and wellness of our children.”
“PEP has been approved and funded every year since FY 2001,” said Bill Sells, SGMA’s vice president of government relations. “Continued Congressional support for PEP is a real testament to the success of this program.”
PEP is the only Federal funding dedicated to physical education. In FY 2001, the PEP Bill was approved for $5 million. The success of PEP has led to a steady increase in funding. In FY 2002, Congress allotted $50 million; $60 million in FY 2003; $70 million in FY 2004; $73 million in FY 2005; $73 million in FY 2006; $73 million in FY 2007; $75.7 million in FY 2008; $78 million in FY 2009; $79 million in FY 2010; $79 million in FY 2011; and $79 million in FY 2012. To date, nearly $800 million in PEP grants have been distributed across the country by the U.S. Department of Education.
Each year the Tennis Industry Association is a proud sponsor and supporter of the SGMA's National Health Through Fitness Day where leaders and executives from dozens of sports associations, businesses, and organizations gather on Capitol Hill to encourage Congress to support physical activity in the US via the Carol M. White Physical Education Program and the Personal Health Investment Act Today bill.