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Kansas Elementaries Not Offering Enough Recess, Advocates Say

A survey of nearly 500 elementary and middle school physical education teachers across the state indicates most of their schools don’t offer 20-minute recess, instead opting for shorter periods that some advocates say may not be adequate to produce the cognitive, emotional and physical benefits that numerous studies have linked to recess.

Funded by the Kansas Health Foundation and conducted by the Kansas Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance and the state education department, the survey found most elementaries split recess into two or more periods. And since two-thirds of respondents indicated total daily recess is 20 minutes or less, these periods appear to be very short, says Rick Pappas, one of the survey’s authors.