Physical Welfare Mission/Vision
ADLAI E. STEVENSON H.S.
DIVISION OF PHYSICAL WELFARE
Through a variety of fitness-based activities, fitness-related discussions, and a comprehensive Health Education program, the Division of Physical Welfare will nurture students’ understanding, development, and maintenance of a healthy personal lifestyle.
I. Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment
Students gain the knowledge and motivation necessary to become healthy, lifelong learners through a fitness-based curriculum. The foundation for cognitive and motor development begins with activities and classroom discussions during Freshman Physical Education and continues through Health Education. Students participating in the upper levels of the program will have choices in fitness and aerobics as well as individual and team sports. Our program is based on the following curricular goals:
- to provide an extensive curriculum in Physical and Health Education with opportunities for participation and development of students with diverse interests and abilities.
- to promote daily student participation and long-term development and improvement.
- to ensure that every student has the knowledge and skills to develop and implement a personal, lifetime fitness plan.
- to create assessments which are appropriate, accurate, and meaningful and based on both best practice in the fields of study and community expectations.
- to provide feedback on assessment results to students and their parents beyond the standard grade reporting procedures through the use of a comprehensive web site.
- to maintain longitudinal assessment results for each student which can provide the basis for personal health and fitness decisions.
II. Emphasis on the Individual Student: Equity and Access for All
We have a commitment to provide each individual student with an equal opportunity for daily physical education regardless of his/her athletic ability or physical capability. The individual needs of the student will determine his/her physical education choices, ranging from fitness to individual/team activities to leadership roles. While we recognize that it is part of human nature, especially during adolescence, to make choices, which are contrary to, personal health and fitness and that students may have opportunities to elect to waiver out of Physical Education, we will fulfill our professional obligation to provide clear and constant reminders of the consequences of poor health and fitness decisions. To achieve these goals, an exemplary program will recognize and embrace the following responsibilities:
- to provide a background in health, fitness, and individual/team activities in Freshman Physical Education through both physical participation and classroom activities/discussions.
- to exceed the State-mandated requirements for Health Education through a required semester course.
- to provide opportunities for a wide variety of physical activity: fitness, aerobics, aquatics, and individual/team sports.
- to offer unique experiences for student leadership, including physical education leadership, pool leadership, and lifeguarding.
- to make alternative physical education available (depending upon the student’s academic schedule) to students with physical and medical challenges to allow them to participate to their fullest potential.
- to ensure that each student’s success is determined by his/her individual participation, effort, and progress.
III. Working Within a Professional Learning Community
There is a clear correlation between high student motivation and achievement and the levels of collaboration, professionalism, and shared commitment that exist within a faculty/staff. With that in mind, we have established the following guiding principles as a reflection of our values as teachers and professionals:
- to work together to design a research-based curriculum that creates conditions which promote student success.
- to develop within our teaching teams a variety of instructional strategies to encourage the development of critical thinking, problem-solving, and performance skills.
- to promote the importance of lifelong fitness and nutrition as students move throughout the Health and Physical Education programs.
- to collaborate with one another, sharing activities and lessons which will ensure student success and a rewarding professional experience.
- to act as professional educators with integrity and honesty and will develop relationships characterized by caring and respect.
- to develop and integrate technology when appropriate to achieve program goals and to enhance student learning.
IV. A Culture for Learning
Physical Education has undergone tremendous changes since Illinois state law mandated it shortly after World War II. We recognize that it is imperative that these changes be communicated to our community and our students so that the stereotype of a "gym class" can finally be eradicated. Our vision is of a Health and Physical Education program, which invites and encourages student participation through a sense of personal pride. To achieve this, we are committed to the following:
- to develop activities and lessons which support intellectual, emotional, social, and physical development through a variety of instructional strategies and formative assessment tools.
- to create a learning environment that encourages positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, self-motivation and positive personal choices, and an understanding of individual and group motivation and behavior.
- to adapt curriculum and instructional methods to the needs of diverse learners.
- to use a variety of instructional methods to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
- to utilize a variety of assessment tools to evaluate and ensure the growth and development of the students.
- to promote the study and use of best practices as delineated by professional organizations in the field and to provide opportunities for continuous professional development.
- to share the concepts and tools of inquiry in these fields to create meaningful learning experiences.
V. Community Engagement
A school, by nature, reflects the goals, desires, and values of the community, which built it and supports it. For the Division of Physical Welfare in the 21st century, that will often create a conflict between academic and personal fitness goals, between perception and reality. We must create strong relationships within the extended community, earning its continued respect and trust, and accept the responsibility of holding the mirror of reality to our students, their parents, and the community at large, maintaining our focus and theirs on the physical, emotional, and mental costs of poor choices regarding personal health and fitness.
- to communicate and promote program goals to students and community and provide access to materials and links through a comprehensive web site.
- to foster relationships with school colleagues, parents, and agencies in the community to support student learning and well-being.
- to utilize community resources that are available to support and extend Division programs and goals.
- to articulate the vision and goals of the Division to faculty, staff, and students in our sender districts.
- to accept the responsibility of being a part of a lighthouse school, sharing ideas with visiting professionals, presenting at local and State conferences, and working collaboratively with colleagues at area schools.