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Aussie kids second last on scorecard for physical activity

National Walk Safely to School Day on Friday 19 May is an opportunity for families to create new healthy and active routines for children and even set a lifelong habit change.

Now in its 18th year, this initiative aims to encourage children to lead a healthier, more active lifestyle by simply including a walk at the beginning, at lunch time and at end of each day. The event also promotes reduced car-dependency, greater use of public transport, cleaner air, improved diets and road safety to all primary school children.

Active Healthy Kids Australia
’s latest 2016 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Young People grades overall physical activity levels. It placed Australian kids equal second-last of 38 countries, beaten by Mozambique, Mexico, Ghana, Columbia, England and New Zealand. Only Scotland performed worse with a “fail” grade.

Only 19 per cent of Australian 5-17 year olds were found to meet the national physical activity guidelines, which call for 60 minutes of heart-pumping physical activity per day. In Slovenia, which topped the rankings, 86 per cent of children met the same benchmark.

“Finding ways of making physical activity a part of children’s regular routines is the easiest way of systemically tackling the problem,” Active Healthy Kids Australia spokeswoman Dr Natasha Schranz said.

“The comparisons show that kids move the most in countries where being active is a priority or is an integral part of their everyday lifestyle.

“In Zimbabwe, which received an A- in Active Transportation, more than 80 per cent of children use active rather than motorised transport to get to and from school. And the Netherlands, which led the table on this measure, of course has a deeply ingrained cycling culture.”


23 Sep 2017 | Australia
Wakakirri wraps up 2017 season on a high News Image

Wakakirri 2017 has been a brilliant eight-week show season with almost 250 schools shaking and grooving their hearts out to be in the running for the National Story of the Year Award. Recurring themes were homelessness, cyber bullying, the environment, technology and friendship. Read More

23 Sep 2017 | Melbourne, VIC
Victorian Education Excellence Awards finalists announced News Image

A school raising the career aspirations of young people and a primary teacher who is passionate about increasing women in STEM education and careers are among the finalists of this year’s Victorian Education Excellence Awards.  Read More

23 Sep 2017
$600,000 funding to enable an Australian-first telepresence robot pilot News Image

St.George Foundation and MissingSchool have announced funding of up to $600,000 over three years to enable an Australian-first telepresence robot pilot. Telepresence robots will be paced in willing schools to demonstrate that continuous two-way connection is possible between seriously sick children and their classrooms. Read More

17 Sep 2017 | Canberra, ACT
Submissions open for review to achieve educational excellence in Australian schools News Image

Submissions for the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools chaired by Mr David Gonski will close on Friday 13 Oct. The report and recommendations on on how school funding should be used to improve school performance and student outcomes will be submitted by March 2018. Read More

17 Sep 2017 | Canberra, ACT
AEU urges longer timeline for submissions to Gonski review News Image

The AEU has called on State and Territory Education Ministers to reject a four-week timeline for submissions to the Gonski 2.0 review panel. The Union said: ‘This review will shape funding negotiations with States and Territories that will directly impact thousands of children in our public schools. Read More