Originally published July 24, 2017 in the Canberra Times.
By Emily Baker
Canberra researchers have unlocked the key to healthier students with better NAPLAN (National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy) scores – but the ACT (Australian Capital Territory) government passed up the offer to formalise an associated program.
Studies led by University of Canberra sports scientist Dick Telford have found either a relationship or conclusive evidence that physical education improves the health and academic outcomes of students. One internationally-published randomised trial undertaken in ACT schools found that children who participated in 90 minutes of physical education each week recorded NAPLAN scores about 10 points higher than those who did not.