Petition Submission To Board Of Education

Dear Superintendent Dreier and Members of the Board of Education,

We, the Greeley Parent Advocacy Group, present to you this evening a total of 475 signatures from community members who support a quality and meaningful education for our community’s children and especially the reinstatement of scheduled daily recess.

All children in K-5 classes should receive the benefit of scheduled daily recess outdoors as a break in their studies, beyond the time incorporated into their lunch break as is currently the case. This call for reinstating daily recess is not about parents disgruntled over change; it’s about the concern for young children’s mental and physical well-being. They need time to engage in unstructured physical play, socially interact with peers, and take a well deserved break to refresh their minds. This will not only benefit them emotionally and academically in the short term, but equally important also socially in years to come!

Please note that these signatures were gathered in a 20 day period and that ninety percent of all persons solicited signed enthusiastically when informed of the concerns stated on the petition. Many said to be grateful that someone was collecting signatures for this cause.

Evidence is overwhelming that student directed play is essential for children to develop social skills. True learning, which involves social interaction and problem solving, is enhanced when we address the basic physical and emotional needs of our children. Physical inactivity poses health threats for children and is associated with the tripling of childhood obesity!

Many of us have personally observed that the present curriculum does not allow for relationship building, problem solving or language practice. If we permit this neglect of basic human needs to continue, the results will be disastrous for our entire community. These youngsters will not know how to learn, how to think, or how to be creative and will not acquire the necessary skills to successfully interact with their fellows.

Therefore, we insist that you, members of the board of education, initiate and facilitate the process for District Six administrators to take the first critical step to dignify all children’s social, physical and mental well-being by reinstating recess in K-5 classes and providing daily time for child directed play in kindergarten classes by the start of this school year’s second semester.

We respectfully ask that you respond before November 23, 2006.

The Greeley Parent Advocacy Group

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