Is Recess the Most Underutilized Opportunity in Schools Today?

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Webcast Details

Aired on: February 9th, 2016

3:30–4:30 p.m. (ET)

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Our Guest(s) This Week

Dr. David Fleming

Dr. David Fleming is Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator in the Eugene T. Moore School of Education at Clemson University and Research Fellow of the National Dropout Prevention Center/Network. Dr. Fleming is an expert at integrating subject matter content into out-of-school education programs for at-risk youth. As one of the 15 strategies for dropout prevention identified by the NDPC, out-of-school (e.g., before, after, summer) activities have great potential for addressing the needs of students in underperforming schools and underserved communities. Dr. Fleming has taught at the elementary, high school, undergraduate, and graduate levels and currently teaches research methods at Clemson University. He has an extensive publication and presentation record and has secured over $4 million in externally funded grants to support his work. In addition, he has held leadership positions in professional organizations at the local, regional and national levels such as the Out-of-School Time SIG in the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and the Society of Health and Physical Education (SHAPE America) as well as volunteering with American Legion sponsored summer leadership programs. Dr. Fleming is currently the Principal Investigator for GoalPOST (Goal-Oriented Performance in Out of School Time), a partnership between Clemson University and Anderson (SC) School Districts #1 and #4 and Pickens County (SC) School District. Among the emphases of GoalPOST is to integrate project oriented activities with goal-setting skills to improve academic achievement. The program also incorporates physical activity as a lifelong practice.  The project involves over 450 elementary students and their families and is funded by the US Department of Education.  The GoalPOST Project received the College Award of Excellence at Clemson University in 2012.

This Week's Topic

Recess is an essential component for students to succeed and grow in school. Yet, many schools have cut back on recess time and frequency to focus on academic content. This presentation focuses on what the research says about the impact recess has on indirect factors such as academics and direct factors such as youth development. Topics include:

  • Defining recess
  • Recess status and policies here and elsewhere
  • Recess and academic, physical, and social skills development impact
  • Recess – Should it be unstructured or structured?
  • What you can do to support recess


Presentation Slides

Parents’ Voices

Teachers’ Voices

Links to Research and Positions from National Organizations 


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