Physical Education Attendance among U.S. High School Students

The NPAPA, in collaboration with our organizational partners, released a new report examining changes in school-based physical education attendance among U.S. high school students over the past two decades. Findings show that physical education attendance has been below the recommended guidelines and notable differences exist between grade level, sex, and race/ethnicity subgroups.
Physical Education Attendance among U.S. High School Students
Key Findings: 
  • One-half of US high school students do not attend physical education classes-which is consistent over the 22-year period studied.
  • Daily physical education attendance dropped 16.2% in four years (from 41.6% in 1991 to 25.4% in 1995)-attendance rates have stabilized since then.
  • Attendance in physical education classes decreases steadily as a student moves from 9th to 12th grade.
  • Consistently, more boys than girls reported attending physical education over the 22-year period studied.