Physical Education

PE2020 stands for Physical Education, 2020. This is an initiative founded by the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) and seeks to answer the question, ‘What will Physical Education be like in the year 2020 and beyond?’NASPE seeks to answer the question by inviting teachers of physical education, K-12 students, school administrators, college/university faculty, community members, policymakers and other key members like the medical community and public health professional to build a shared Vision and thoughts for Physical Education in the Year 2020 and beyond (NASPE, 2010). PE2020 is a two phase programme; online forum is the first phase, which will lay a foundation for all the next phases, depending on the responses that are gathered from the online forum. The goal of NASPE organization is to develop individual who are physically educated and actively participates in lifelong physical activity.

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Physical Education is a course taken in primary or secondary school that promotes physical activity in a discovery environment. Physical activity refers to behavior that expends energy or a body movement that includes sport activities, fitness, daily activities like running and walking and other recreational activities while physical education is a vital part of school curriculum that teaches about physical activities. The objective of physical education is to develop physically educated and fit individuals who have the skills, knowledge and confidence to enjoy a healthful life full of physical activities (Kleinman, 2009). Healthy life style or habits such as healthy eating habits and physical activity lower the risk of developing obesity and related disease. Among the front line drivers of economic recession experienced in 2008/2009 worldwide is high health care related cost which is projected to rise in the future (Chenoweth & Associates, 2009). According to America’s Health Rankings (2009) it is projected that obesity will cost the United States an estimated $344 billion in medical-related expenses by 2018, consuming up about 21 percent America’s health-care spending”. Developing strategies that will aid us in achieving vision PE 2020 will be vital to minimize health care related cost in the future. On March 19, 2009,  President Obama was quoted saying  “…one of the most important ways for us to control [healthcare] costs is to deal with the issue of prevention, which means making sure that…we've got effective physical education programs for our children.”

This literature review seeks to review literature on how physical education changes or needs to change to meet the needs of the 2020 students. The Literature review will focus on how the world is changing; Economy, politics, environment, culture, technology, etc? Secondly, how education is changing Standards, technology, high-stakes testing, etc.)  And finally how physical education changes or needs to change as all these other things are changing to meet the needs of the 2020 students.

How the world is changing?

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As the question puts it “how our world is changing” our world is constantly and rapidly changing. These changes occur every day without us recognizing them, but as we turn our mind back in history we observe how the world has gone through tremendous changes. As the question puts it “how our world is changing” our world is constantly and rapidly changing. These changes occur every day without us recognizing them, but as we turn our mind back in history we observe how the world has gone through tremendous changes. Over time change is inevitable in any nation. Various factors have made the world to change, advancing technology, economic and political changes, cultural and religious changes, social reforms, foreign influences among others.

Economy Changes and Physical Education

The world economy has been changing constantly simultaneously with technology and other changes. One of the main factors contributing to economy changes today is globalization. It has become a global trend, often denoting a scenario where people, technology, money and culture move from across borders of one nation to another. Changing economy indicate changes in economic status of the people. Improving economy indicates rising salary and income and this people have enough cash to participate in physical activities like GYM. Economic status is a key factor that determines whether or not people participate in physical exercise. The 2008/2009 global economic recession created dire situations such as; high unemployment rate, inability to pay rent and purchase basic necessities, and depletion of savings and other resources. According to World Economic Situation and Prospects (2010) world economy continued to recover over the first half of 2010 with a low pace though as compared to the year prior to the economic crisis. The recovery of world economy since the economic recession has boosted all sectors in the United States including the education sector in terms of more funding and government support. Brunori (2000) observed 5 major tax bills which were introduced to support funding of US education. More funding by the government on education will promote physical education improvement in school by producing the necessary facilities needed to expand the PE lessons and will highly contribute to achievement of PE2020.

According to Parker (2007), during the ‘Great Economic Depression’ back in 1929, schools cut their physical education budget so as to cater for other ‘more important needs’ first. Students dropped subjects such as physical education, art, home economics and foreign languages, and instead only took the basic subjects such as arithmetic and reading, because parents could not afford to pay for the extra subjects. This greatly affected the students’ view towards physical education, as it was seen as just an extra subject that was not important. Learning of physical education is still affected today as many people still do not view it as an important part of learning. Nevertheless, improvement in the economy has a positive effect on physical education. This is because funds are allocated to revive physical education activities. Since people are at a better financial position, they can afford to pay for physical education classes. Parents can also afford to pay for extra classes for their children, including physical education.         

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According to NASPE’s envisions (2010), it is expected that with a better economy by 2020 PE is going to be great. Economy plays a central role in boosting and motivating the entire activity. With better economy, there will be a lot of technology, and there will be machines that will automatically work and give you exercise even when asleep. According to the progress being made from the past, NASPE asserts that the economy is expected to be much better by 2020, and this will allow the nation to supply more physical education equipment to all schools. “PE will definitely have more advanced workouts and better exercises for stretching out our muscles,” NASPE, (2010). Additionally, Hastie, Sanders, and Rowland (1999) performed a study in regard to the number of PE teachers and class size in Madison school with a purpose to know the influence on funding. They noted that the cuts in funding resulted to more student numbers in a class with less teacher, which subsequently led to poor performance. They then concluded that the economy and funding really plays a fundamental role in enhancing physical education and has to be considered to meet the needs of students by 2020.

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