Physical Education

pe photoPhysical Education (PE) gives students the knowledge and skills they need to be physically active throughout their lifetimes. Physical activity, in turn, helps strengthen the body, improve self-esteem, lower anxiety, prevent obesity, and prevent a variety of diseases. Physical Education also supports learning and academic achievement in other areas. Research suggests that increasing time for PE classes may lead to higher test scores in core subject areas - even when that means less time devoted to instruction in those core areas – especially with high-quality PE programs that engage all students and keep them active a majority of the time.


Physical Education Requirements

Physical Education is required for all students in grades 1-12 according to RI General Laws §16-22-4 and Sec. 3.5 of the Rules and Regulations for School Health Programs. Students should receive an average of 100 minutes per week of health and physical education. Recess, free play, and after-school activities are not counted as physical education.

Adapted Physical Education

According to Sec. 300.108 of the Regulations Governing the Education of Children with Disabilities, physical education - specially designed if necessary - must be provided to children with disabilities who are receiving Free Appropriate Public Education (See relevant definitions in Sec. 300.39). Each child with a disability should have the opportunity to participate in the regular physical education program, unless:

  • The child is enrolled full time in a separate facility; or
  • The child needs specially designed education, as prescribed in the child's Individualized Education Program (IEP).
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    For additional information contact:

    Midge Sabatini, Ed.D.

    RI Department of Education  

    401-222-8952 

    Eliza Lawson

    RI Department of Health

    401-222-4847