Combating Childhood Obesity

October 30, 2003 — Posted at 5:33 pm CST

JONESBORO, AR — For 40 minutes each day, students at Philadelphia Elementary school in Jonesboro walk, run, or jump to get in shape.

The routines are part of a Presidential Fitness Challenge that monitors how each students' health progresses throughout the year.

"We think it's so important for students to be as healthy as possible, because they learn better if they don't have any health problems that act as barriers," said Principal Paul House.

In order to combat childhood obesity, a senate panel passed a measure yesterday that would give federal grants to cities and schools to pay for nutrition and fitness classes. Principal House says schools can always use more help.

"We always need more funding especially with reading, writing and arithmetic. Now if they can help us to make sure that what comes from nutrition helps us with others, certainly we welcome it," said House.