New PE Format

Remote Learning Physical Education Switches to Independent Workouts


Eli Greenwald

According to surveys conducted by the Student Senate, a large portion of the student body had an issue with PE during remote learning this semester. At the beginning of December, thanks in part to feedback from students, the Physical Education department modified PE classes for the remainder of this semester.

Before the change, students would work out live on Zoom during their scheduled PE period. According to the survey, many students felt uncomfortable exercising live on camera in front of other students, and some felt it was not a worthwhile use of time. Others brought up the issue of equity, as not all students have access to sufficient space to exercise during school hours.

For at least the remainder of the semester, students will work out independently twice a week for 30 minutes and upload some form of proof, such as a video, or metrics from a workout app, to the Portal. According to PE teacher Willie Banks, “Using the portal for the screenshot submissions makes it so much easier. It’s the best thing ever.”

The Student Senate Heads, including Junior Alex Carlin, had an impact on this change. According to Carlin, the issue of PE came up in Student Government Cabinet meetings, as well as in weekly Student Senate meetings. “In Cabinet, there was a discussion about how gym was not working for most people,” Carlin said. “In Senate meetings, a lot of people talked about the issues of equity and body image.”

“This issue is affecting everyone. Most students thought that last year’s remote learning PE format was better,” Carlin said. “I’m very happy with how everything worked out, and I think the student body is as well.”

Carlin also gives credit to Upper School Head Justin Brandon for helping to solve this issue. “Mr. Brandon was very understanding with how the student body was feeling, and he agreed that something needed to be done,” Carlin said. “Mr. Brandon has been fantastic and very helpful with the whole situation. He was very open to our ideas and was very willing to help. He deserves a lot of credit for this change.”

Overall Carlin and the other senate heads are very happy with the new format. “I think the PE teachers did a good job implementing this system so it works best for everyone,” Carlin said.