Date of Award

Summer 5-18-2019

Degree Type


Degree Name

Executive Ed.D. in Education Leadership Management and Policy


Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Richard Blissett, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Martin J. Finkelstein, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Brian Chinni, Ed.D.


physical education, physical activity, wellness, naep, academic achievement, assessment


There have been several studies that analyzed the relationship between physical education and academic achievement at a local level, but a longitudinal analysis across the United States has not been done. An understanding of the relationship between physical education policies across the United States and academic achievement at the state level may provide insight into best practices to ensure that comprehensive physical education policies are adopted in all states. Using data from the Society of Health and Physical Educators and The National Assessment of Educational Progress, I investigated the relationship between physical education policies and academic achievement. Minor relationships with minimal statistical significance were found between mandated physical education at the elementary level and reading/math NAEP outcomes. Inverse relationships with slight statistical significance were found in reading/math NAEP scores when states required physical education licensure. These results are important because there is a visible misalignment between current research and state level outcomes. Ultimately, federal initiatives may be “lost in translation” when they are passed down from state legislators to the local school level.