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Finding The Summit

Finding The Summit

By definition a summit is:

  1. the highest point of a hill or mountain.
  2. the highest attainable level of achievement.
  3. a meeting between people who are interested in the same subject.

When we tried to think of a name for the relaunch of our professional journal, it only seemed fitting that after a year of what seemed like uphill climbing, we landed on the name, The Summit. While we saw metaphors in the first two parts of the definition, we had our “A-HA!” moment with the third...a meeting between people interested in the same subject. Over 6,300 of you supported our efforts in advocating for Health and Physical Education this year when proposed legislation threatened to cut programs in lieu of athletic substitution. Hundreds of teachers join us monthly, (virtually!) while watching live webinars, or catching up with the recordings later. For the past 100 years, HPE teachers have rallied together at our conferences and workshops to ensure they have access to the most up-to practices, content, and resources to continue their own professional growth. So yes, The Summit just felt right.

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The Future for Future Professionals!

SHAPE PA is excited to announce a new committee designed to meet the needs of our future professional members! The Future Professionals Advisory Committee (FPAC) is composed of a student representative from five Pennsylvania universities with Health and Physical Education teacher preparation programs; East Stroudsburg University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Lock Haven University, Slippery Rock University, and West Chester University.

Members of this committee will serve as liaisons between SHAPE PA and their universities. Their duties include monthly zoom meetings, reporting back to their universities, creating professional development opportunities for our future professionals through SHAPE PA, and assisting in projects and tasks assigned by the SHAPE PA Board of Directors (BOD).

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The Importance of Creating a Health “Re-entry” Unit

It is our time to shine and it is important to seize this moment. 2020 has made it glaringly obvious that our mental, physical, and social health are at the core of what determines our quality of life. Finding that balance and maintaining wellness while navigating through these unprecedented and unknown times has been challenging personally and professionally. To say that I have experienced self-growth is an understatement, and I say that humbly. It required self-reflection, feeling uncomfortable, needing help, an abundance of new learning, and accepting change. 


I will say it again. It is our time to shine and it is important to seize this moment. And yes…I am speaking directly to Health and Physical Education teachers. We must be vocal about the importance of our curriculums while advocating that Health and Physical Education is an essential component of an in-person, hybrid, or online schedule. We must also be intentional in our instruction and content by creating a Health “Re-entry” Unit.

WHY?

SHAPE PA re-entry guidelines suggest that health education reinforce habits that prevent the spread of communicable disease, hygiene habits, health skills related to emotional and mental health, managing stress, and risky behaviors. While these topics naturally surface in the PSAHPERD (soon to be SHAPE) and SHAPE standards, it is essential that we should be intentional in the 2020-2021 school year regarding our re-entry response prior to re-visiting our regularly scheduled curriculums. Our students need to know that we are willing to address their needs by focusing on topics that are relevant and specific to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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20/20 Vision

Oh, the irony that a rollercoaster of a year marked 2020 shares the same numbers as what ophthalmologists use to mark normal vision, 20/20. 

I don’t know about you, but personally, for me looking back on the past 4-ish months I somehow feel that time has flown and it’s also stood still. How is that possible? 

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A Letter to the Class of 2020

To our College and University Seniors,  

We know this was a graduation weekend for many of you and things are not ending as planned. As you make this monumental transition into your professional career, you springboard into adulthood as well. Scary when you think of it that way, right?! Sometimes these big life transitions come at us like the seeker in hide-and-seek. Ready or not, here it comes. Don’t worry, you are prepared and ready. You got this.

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Pennsylvania CPR Update for High School Health Curriculum

Background:

State Senator (Killion) introduced a bill (SB521) for hands-only CPR instruction for high school students (PA State Rep R Lee James also introduced a similar bill, HB1097) that passed in the Senate and House. It is important to note that these bills do not state that CPR Certification is mandatory. 

Summary:

  • High School students should have CPR information/knowledge in their HS health curriculum
  • CPR is a component of the new 10th Grade Core Concepts within the PA Health Standards
  • PA law DOES NOT state that certification is needed, rather, it is a local decision if schools want to offer certification
  • Health and Physical Educators must be trained and certified (Red Cross or American Heart Association) if they offer a CPR certification to students.  
    • Schools also have the option of bringing in/paying the Red Cross, Heart Association, etc. under the supervision of a certified H/PE teacher.  

Benefits of CPR in High School Health Curriculum:

  • Career Readiness
  • Resume building
  • Supports Well-Rounded Education  

Funding:

If you are certifying students in CPR, this falls under ESSA- Career Education which contributes to a well-rounded education. As a result, districts may be able to access federal funds (Title II) to cover training costs affiliated with CPR Instructor training. Talk to your district today about including this in your PA ESSA Comprehensive State Plan to access funds! 

 

What is Advocacy?

What is Advocacy?

Unfortunately, the concept of advocacy is often misunderstood. Simply put, Advocacy is “Educating others and/or conveying an opinion."

Advocacy is what you do when you are actively supporting a cause. Although advocacy is often compared to public relations, it is quite different. When teachers advocate for an issue, they are committed to providing information to stakeholder groups that will build support for their vision. They also recognize the importance of building networks and alliances that will support their efforts.

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Why Blog? Why Not?

Has this conversation happened in your faculty rooms? “They don’t understand what we do in our physical education classes.” “They” could be administrators, school board members, or parents. “They” often make assumptions about what physical education is like based on their own experiences in school. “They” are often decision makers whose very decisions can make it hard to grow.

What if you could offer insight into your philosophy and what happens in your class? Sharing what you do creates opportunities for learning for all stakeholders. “They” would gain an understanding of your thoughts, how you help your students, and what your students are learningGeorge Couros says about blogging, “When we see ‘sharing’ as something that both supports and pushes us to be better, the big winner will always be the students.” I think we can all agree the students are why we do what we do.

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