Controversy brews over online P.E.courses

What do you think about Gilbert school's program?

GILBERT - Schools all over the Valley offer online courses. But, what about an online P.E class? It's an option one state lawmaker wants taken off the table.

Arizona Republican Rep. Paul Boyer says kids need to get away from the computer screens, TV screens and cell phone screens and, instead, venture outside and get some exercise.

On a beautiful day in Gilbert, the SWAT girls softball team is busy doing drills and learning proper technique. But, it's that type of instruction that wouldn't happen during an online physical education course.

According to the Gilbert Public School's website, the district offers three online P.E. courses, including bowling.

Tawyna Rowan says that's something her daughter, Tianna, will never be allowed to take.

"It's important that I make sure they're all continuing to be active out here in the community. So, it's not something I'd ever encourage," Rowan explains.

Rep. Boyer plans to address the issue by introducing a bill next session. He says he's heard from several school districts who say they're not happy with the curriculum offered by the online providers.

"They can't verify the actual rigor of the online instruction," Boyer explains.

In fact, Tianna says she knows a girl who took the online P.E. class.

"She told me she failed it. But, I don't know what it was like, though," Tianna said.

Rowan says she's confused because our schools should be helping to push physical activity among students.

"We're trying to promote the health of our kids and them sitting behind a computer is not capturing that," Rowan says.

ABC15 reached out to Gilbert Public Schools. But, they told us they weren't available to talk to us Monday.

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