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Health assessment results show overall improvement needed in Hall schools
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Hall County students do better in cardiovascular health, but could stand to improve in muscular strength and endurance.

“Just from my quick analysis, cardiovascular tended to be (an area) that is stronger,” said Jacob Weiers, wellness coordinator with the Hall school system.

The data was collected via Fitnessgram, the state’s assessment program for students in physical education courses. It looks at health-related fitness in aerobic capacity, muscular strength and flexibility.

The student’s height and weight are also collected to determine body mass index, one way to look at whether or not a person is overweight or obese.

Therese McGuire is the program specialist in health and physical education for the Georgia Department of Education. She said that the scores from the 2011-12 school year are on par with students in the rest of the country.

Fitnessgram data from Georgia showed that 43 percent of students were not in the “Healthy Fitness Zone” per their body mass index. That includes overweight, obese and underweight students.

“There weren’t any surprises,” McGuire said about the overall Fitnessgram results. “I think the one area that was maybe a little bit disappointing would be the percentage of students that didn’t reach the Healthy Zone in any areas.”

Twenty percent of students in grades fourth through 12th across the state did not reach that zone.

“That would be a good place to concentrate on some improvement,” she added.

McGuire added that she would like to see overall improvement in cardiovascular activity when the 2012-13 results are released in mid-October.

Fitnessgram results are sent home to parents via students.

“What we’d really like is that each child that participated last year could see some personal improvement,” McGuire said. “That’s really the intent and philosophy behind the assessment. From a state level, we’d like to see some positive movement in all of the areas of fitness.”

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