Bringing Back Recess to CPS Schools

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Written by: Lee Haas

Lee is a long-time member and volunteer of NPN. She currently serves as the NPN CPS Liaison.  She is our past NPN Board President. She freelances as a writer and lives with her husband and two daughters on the NorthWest side. She is a founding member of the PTO at her daughter's CPS school.

As parents, we are faced with many “hot topic” issues dealing with raising our kids. While NPN does not take a formal position on advocacy issues, it is in keeping with our mission to provide a resource and forum for our members to share information and opinions on any “hot topics” that are relevant to raising children in the city.

The following development regarding the school recess issue was brought to our attention by the Raise Your Hand Coalition.

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Chicago-based Raise Your Hand Coalition today issued the following statement regarding the release of the CPS Recess Plan Guide:

The Raise Your Hand Coalition is thrilled with the release of the school recess plan guide issued today by Chicago Public Schools. Raise Your Hand began to shed light on this topic at the CPS board meeting in February, where committee chairperson Patricia O’Keefe encouraged CPS to consider shifting from the abbreviated school schedule currently used at most schools back to the traditional school day model that would allow for an extra 45-minutes and create additional time for recess and lunch.   Under O’Keefe’s leadership, Raise Your Hand has worked tirelessly in collaboration with CPS to create a solution that will renew, promote and encourage schools to adopt the Modified Open Campus option—an option that will result in a better, more effective learning environment for hundreds of thousands of children.

We are delighted that CPS has taken this big step in the movement to allow more time for recess and lunch. Currently only 37% of CPS schools have any recess, so there is a lot of work to be done.  We look forward to continuing to work with CPS, Healthy Schools, COFI and other stakeholders to ensure that the schools adopt the new scheduling option that will create a better learning environment and more well-rounded school day.

Additional Resources:

http://www.cps.edu/News/Press_releases/Pages/05_23_2011_PR1.aspx

http://ilraiseyourhand.org/content/cps-recess-tool-kit-now-available?

http://www.catalyst-chicago.org/notebook/index.php/entry/1123/CPS_releases_new_guide_to_bring_back_recess

http://www.wbez.org/story/cps-backs-recess-86944#

http://www.cofionline.org/power_pac.php?id=30

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Posted on May 26, 2011 at 9:45 AM

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