FR Doc 2010-5736
[Federal Register: March 16, 2010 (Volume 75, Number 50)]
[Notices]               
[Page 12522-12532]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr16mr10-41]                        

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Carol M. White Physical Education Program

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.215F.

AGENCY: Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of proposed priorities, requirements, and definitions.

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SUMMARY: The Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools 
proposes priorities, requirements, and definitions for the Carol M. 
White Physical Education Program (PEP). The Assistant Deputy Secretary 
may use one or more of these priorities, requirements, and definitions 
for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2010 and later years. We take this 
action to align PEP projects more closely with best practices and 
research related to improving children's health and fitness. Under the 
proposed requirements, new projects would be required to address a 
variety of mechanisms and approaches for improving students' physical 
activity and eating habits and improve students' ability to meet their 
State physical education standards.

DATES: We must receive your comments on or before April 15, 2010.

ADDRESSES: Address all comments about this notice to Carlette Huntley, 
U.S. Department of Education, 550 12th Street, SW., Room 10071, 
Washington, DC 20202-6450. If you prefer to send your comments through 
e-mail, use the following address: carlette.huntley@ed.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Carlette Huntley.
    Telephone: (202) 245-7871 or by e-mail: carlette.huntley@ed.gov.
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the 
Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Invitation to Comment: We invite you to submit comments regarding 
this notice. To ensure that your comments have maximum effect in 
developing the notice of final priorities, requirements, and 
definitions, we urge you to identify clearly the specific proposed 
priority, requirement, or definition that each comment addresses.
    We invite you to assist us in complying with the specific 
requirements of Executive Order 12866 and its overall requirement of 
reducing regulatory burden that might result from these proposed 
priorities, requirements, and definitions. Please let us know of any 
further ways we could reduce potential costs or increase potential 
benefits while preserving the effective and efficient administration of 
the program.
    During and after the comment period, you may inspect all public 
comments about this notice in room 10096, 550 12th Street, SW., 
Washington, DC, between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., 
Washington, DC time, Monday through Friday of each week except Federal 
holidays.
    Assistance to Individuals with Disabilities in Reviewing the 
Rulemaking Record: On request we will provide an appropriate 
accommodation or auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability who 
needs assistance to review the comments or other documents in the 
public rulemaking record for this notice. If you want to schedule an 
appointment for this type of accommodation or auxiliary aid, please 
contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
    Purpose of Program: The purpose of PEP is to initiate, expand, and 
improve physical education for students in grades K-12.
    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 7261-7261f.
    Applicable Program Regulations: 34 CFR part 299.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    General: We propose a new direction to strengthen and enhance PEP 
and to support a broader, strategic vision for (a) encouraging the 
development of lifelong healthy habits, and (b) improving nutrition and 
physical education programming and policies in schools and communities 
to prevent obesity and to decrease the number of children who are 
overweight or obese. This new direction will focus on increasing 
opportunities for students to be physically active and practice good 
nutritional habits in and out of school. PEP's new direction would 
apply lessons learned and best practices based on research and program 
evaluation that were not available during PEP's earlier years. With 
this new direction, we seek to provide funding to districts and 
community-based organizations in communities that plan to implement 
comprehensive, integrated physical activity and nutrition programs and 
policies that are reinforced in and by the community. By promoting 
sequential, research-based physical education and instruction in 
healthy eating and implementing policies to encourage physical activity 
and healthy eating, we expect PEP projects to result in students 
developing important skills, knowledge, and behaviors that will 
translate into healthy habits that will carry into adulthood. Research 
demonstrates that active, healthy youth are more likely to become 
active, healthy adults.
    Proposed Priorities:
    This notice contains three proposed priorities. One is proposed as 
an absolute priority and two are proposed as competitive priorities.

Proposed Absolute Priority--Programs Designed To Create Quality 
Physical Education Programs

    Background:
    Over the last decade, health and education professionals, as well 
as States and communities, have been increasingly concerned about 
changing health and behavior patterns related to physical activity, 
nutrition, and weight status. While a healthy lifestyle can help 
prevent a host of serious health outcomes, including heart disease and 
diabetes, data show that a large percentage of youth are sedentary and 
neither active enough nor have a healthy diet. Only about 17 percent of 
high school students meet the current recommendations for physical 
activity.\1\ In a recent study, about one-quarter of high school 
students reported that they used a computer or played computer or video 
games more than three hours a day and about 35 percent of high school 
students reported watching television three or more hours per day on an 
average school day. Only 21 percent of high school students reported 
eating five or more fruits or vegetables each day in the previous 
week.\2\ These behaviors have contributed to a rise in overweight and 
obese youth, with recent studies indicating that 17 percent of 6-11 
year-olds and 17.6 percent of 12-19 year-olds are considered obese. 
Furthermore, 33 percent of 6-11 year olds and 34 percent of 12-19 year 
olds

[[Page 12523]]

are overweight; \3\ these rates have roughly doubled since 1980.\4\
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    \1\ Department of Health and Human Services. Office of Disease 
Prevention and Health Promotion. 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines 
for Americans. Washington, DC, 2008. The 2008 Physical Activity 
Guidelines for Americans recommends 60 minutes of physical activity 
per day for children and adolescents, which should include moderate 
to vigorous aerobic activity, as well as age-appropriate muscle and 
bone strengthening activities.
    \2\ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Youth Risk 
Behavior Survey, 2007. Accessed online at http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth. 
The question on physical activity asks about doing any 
kind of physical activity that increased their heart rate and made 
them breathe hard some of the time for a total of at least 60 
minutes per day on five or more of the seven days before the survey. 
The question on nutritional intake asks students to report if the 
student ate fruits and vegetables (100 percent fruit juices, fruit, 
green salad, potatoes [excluding French fries, fried potatoes, or 
potato chips], carrots, or other vegetables) five or more times per 
day during the seven days before the survey.
    \3\ ``Overweight'' is defined as at or above the 85th percentile 
and ``obese'' is defined as at or above the 95th percentile on BMI-
for-age growth charts.
    \4\ Ogden C, Carroll M, Flegal K. High body mass index for age 
among US children and adolescents, 2003-2006. JAMA. 2008;299(20): 
2410-2405.
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    Schools are most likely to have an impact on student physical 
activity and dietary behaviors when they provide students with a 
quality physical education program, nutrition instruction and a healthy 
nutrition environment, and multiple opportunities and settings that 
promote and practice physical activity and healthy eating.\5\ PEP's 
authorizing statute identifies six program elements that may be 
included in funded projects, and that, when undertaken together, 
characterize a quality program in physical education and nutrition 
education. The six program elements are designed to provide the 
cognitive, instructional, and experiential components that promote the 
adoption of lifelong healthy habits, as well as enhanced cooperative 
and social skills for students, and ongoing professional development 
for teachers and staff. The program elements are: (1) Fitness education 
and assessment to help students understand, improve, or maintain their 
physical well-being; (2) instruction in a variety of motor skills and 
physical activities designed to enhance the physical, mental, and 
social or emotional development of every student; (3) development of, 
and instruction in, cognitive concepts about motor skills and physical 
fitness that support a lifelong healthy lifestyle; (4) opportunities to 
develop positive social and cooperative skills through physical 
activity participation; (5) instruction in healthy eating habits and 
good nutrition; and (6) opportunities for professional development for 
teachers of physical education to stay abreast of the latest research, 
issues, and trends in the field of physical education.
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    \5\ Institute of Medicine. Preventing Childhood Obesity: Health 
in the Balance. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2005.
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    Historically, the Department has required applicants for PEP grants 
to address at least one of the six elements. Beginning in 2004, we 
sought to re-focus the program to include efforts that strategically 
support the promotion of lifelong healthy habits. We have funded six 
cohorts of grantees under this particular framework and, through our 
observations, reviews of project reports, work with grantees, and 
consultation with other Federal agencies and non-governmental partners, 
have concluded that additional changes are necessary to strengthen the 
program, better align it with the latest research and best practices in 
the field, and fund programs that are most likely to be sustainable 
following the period of Federal funding.
    We believe that requiring applicants to create programs and 
policies that address element 5, regarding nutrition instruction, plus 
at least one of the other elements related to physical activity will 
result in the development and implementation of approaches that go 
beyond instruction in physical education or fulfillment of physical 
education equipment needs, which have been the historical foci of PEP-
funded projects. A combined focus on both nutrition and physical 
activity and physical education programming, curricula, and related 
equipment necessary for implementation, along with changes to related 
physical activity and nutrition policies, provide the basis for an 
initiative that goes beyond implementing a specific curriculum or using 
a particular piece or set of physical education equipment. Instead, 
this requirement will encourage applicants to consider the range of 
approaches necessary to promoting healthy habits within two broad 
categories, instruction in healthy eating and physical activity or 
physical education, while allowing applicants to design programs that 
best meet their identified gaps and needs and enhance their identified 
assets in as comprehensive a manner as possible.
    Proposed Absolute Priority:
    Under this proposed priority, an applicant would be required to 
develop, expand, or improve its physical education program and address 
its State's physical education standards \6\ by undertaking the 
following activities: (1) Instruction in healthy eating habits and good 
nutrition and (2) physical fitness activities that must include at 
least one of the following: (a) Fitness education and assessment to 
help students understand, improve, or maintain their physical well-
being; (b) instruction in a variety of motor skills and physical 
activities designed to enhance the physical, mental, and social or 
emotional development of every student; (c) development of, and 
instruction in, cognitive concepts about motor skills and physical 
fitness that support a lifelong healthy lifestyle; (d) opportunities to 
develop positive social and cooperative skills through physical 
activity participation; or (e) opportunities for professional 
development for teachers of physical education to stay abreast of the 
latest research, issues, and trends in the field of physical education.
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    \6\ States that do not have their own physical education 
standards may use another State's standards.
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Proposed Competitive Preference Priority 1--Collection of Body Mass 
Index Measurement Background:

    Over the last several years, with increasing attention focused on 
the childhood obesity epidemic, several States and municipalities have 
begun using the Body Mass Index (BMI) to create awareness of the extent 
of weight problems in their State or municipality. Collecting data on 
BMI can identify the percentages of students in the population who are 
obese, overweight, normal weight, and underweight. Childhood obesity is 
associated with cardiovascular disease risk factors, including high 
blood pressure, high cholesterol, and impaired fasting glucose.\7\ 
Obese young people are more likely than children of normal weight to 
become overweight or obese adults and, therefore, more at risk for 
associated health problems during adulthood, including heart disease, 
type 2 diabetes, stroke, several types of cancer, and 
osteoarthritis.\8\ Additionally, researchers estimate that medical 
costs of the obesity epidemic may total as much as $147 billion 
annually.\9\
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    \7\ Freedman D, Zuguo M, Srinivasan S, Berenson G, Dietz W. 
Cardiovascular risk factors and excess adiposity among overweight 
children and adolescents: The Bogalusa Heart Study. J Pediatr. 
2007;150(1): 12-17.
    \8\ U.S. Surgeon General. Overweight and obesity: Health 
consequences. Rockville, MD, 2001. Accessed at 
http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/topics/obesity/ on October 14, 2009.
    \9\ Finkelstein E, Trogdon J, Cohen J, and Dietz W. Annual 
medical spending attributable to obesity: Payer-and service-specific 
estimates. Health Affairs. 2009; 28(5): w822-w831.
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    Several States and municipalities have started using BMI as an 
approach to identifying the percentage of youth in the population who 
are obese, overweight, normal weight, and underweight. These data, in 
the aggregate, can be used to describe the weight status over time in 
the student population; monitor progress toward achieving national 
health objectives \10\; and monitor the effects of school-based 
physical activity and nutrition policies and programs.
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    \10\ National health objectives can be found in Healthy People, 
2010, accessed at 
http://www.healthypeople.gov/Document/html/uih/uih_bw/uih_4.htm#overandobese 
on October 15, 2009.
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    BMI is a tool for assessing weight status that is relatively easy 
to use and correlates with body fat. The BMI is based on a calculation 
using weight and height (kg/m \2\). Although the same formula is used 
for adults, children, and adolescents, weight status for children

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and adolescents is determined by plotting BMI by age on a sex-specific 
growth chart, created by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 
(CDC), and presented as a BMI-for-age percentile 
(http://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts). For children and adolescents, the weight 
status categories are ``underweight'' (BMI less than the 5th percentile), 
``healthy weight'' (BMI is greater than the 5th percentile but less 
than the 85th percentile), ``overweight'' (BMI is greater than the 85th 
percentile and less than the 95th percentile) and ``obese'' (BMI is 
greater than the 95th percentile). The BMI-for-age percentiles 
identified by the CDC are the recommended method of reporting size and 
growth patterns among children in the United States.\11\
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    \11\ Krebs NF et al. Assessment of child and adolescent 
overweight and obesity. Pediatrics. 2007;120:S193-S228.
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    As BMI is a measure of weight status at only one point in time, it 
is important for students, families, and policy-makers to consider 
trends in BMI data rather than taking action based on one measurement 
point. For children and teens, BMI is used as a screening tool, not a 
diagnostic tool, which means that it can suggest that a child may have 
a weight concern but it is not a tool that will determine that the 
child's weight status is a problem.\12\ A trained medical care provider 
would need to perform other follow-up assessments and tests \13\ to 
determine if the student actually has excess body fat or other health 
risks related to obesity.
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    \12\ Freedman D, Wang, J, Thornton J, Mei Z, Sopher A, Pierson 
R, Dietz W, and Horlick M. Classification of Body Mass Index-for-Age 
Categories Among Children. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent 
Medicine. 2009;163(9):805-811.
    \13\ Additional assessments and tests could include a patient's 
medical history, family history, diet, physical activity habits, and 
blood pressure and laboratory tests, such as cholesterol levels.
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    To understand a BMI score more accurately, practitioners often also 
look at other measures, such as assessments of fitness levels, physical 
activity levels, and nutritional intake. For policy-makers, looking at 
prevalence and trends in obesity among youth at the school, district, 
and/or community levels (as measured by the BMI) can create awareness 
of the overall population's health and fitness, and provide an impetus 
to improve policies, practices, and services.
    Program planners should carefully consider the issues related to 
undertaking a BMI assessment program in a school or a school-related 
setting, and should first define the intent of their assessment program 
and the desired outcomes they wish to achieve by undertaking BMI 
assessment. Program planners should consider how these efforts would be 
understood and accepted by the community. Planners should also consider 
how the information would be used in the context of the other required 
measures for this program (see the REQUIREMENTS section of this notice) 
and as part of the fitness assessments that applicants may propose in 
response to this program element in Proposed Absolute Priority 1. When 
presented with complementary measures of fitness, physical activity, 
nutritional habits, and behaviors to be addressed through PEP, these 
measures provide not only a means for assessing the health and fitness 
of the student population, but also ideas about program and policy 
components that require improvement and the ability to monitor changes 
to these indicators over time.
    Grantees that receive funds under this priority would be required 
to provide parents with the choice to have their child opt out of this 
assessment as part of the development and implementation of their BMI 
measurement practice, and to inform parents of this choice. 
Additionally, unless the BMI assessment is permitted or required by 
State law, local educational agency (LEA) applicants must develop 
policies in consultation with parents that provide reasonable notice of 
the applicant's plan to collect BMI data, in compliance with the 
Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA), 20 U.S.C. 1232h.
    Planners should also consider the timing and flow of students into 
the assessment site to have their BMI measured, how the measurement 
would be performed, the equipment needed to carry out the assessment, 
who would perform the assessment, and how data would be calculated, 
recorded, and protected. These procedures should adhere to the best 
available scientific practices and procedures.
    If program planners intend to provide information to parents about 
their children, planners should consider if and how they would be able 
to access follow-up testing or treatment by a heath care provider, and 
might create a referral system for youth who are identified as obese, 
overweight, or underweight. If the information will be shared with 
parents, planners should provide a clear and respectful explanation of 
the BMI results and a list of the appropriate actions. Resources are 
available to help schools implement these kinds of activities in the 
safest and most effective way possible, including CDC's Children's BMI 
Tool for Schools, which can be accessed at:  
http://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/assessing/bmi/childrens_bmi/tool_for_schools.html.
    Proposed Competitive Preference Priority:
    We propose giving a competitive preference priority to applicants 
that agree to implement aggregate BMI data collection, and use it as 
part of a comprehensive assessment of health and fitness for the 
purposes of monitoring the weight status of their student population 
across time. Applicants would be required to sign a Program-Specific 
Assurance that would commit them to:
    (a) Use the CDC's BMI-for-age growth charts to interpret BMI 
results (http://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts);
    (b) Create a plan to develop and implement a protocol that would 
include parents in the development of their BMI assessment and data 
collection policies, including a mechanism to allow parents to provide 
feedback on the policy. Applicants would be required to detail the 
following required components in their aggregate BMI data collection 
protocol: The proposed method for measuring BMI, who would perform the 
BMI assessment (i.e., staff members trained to obtain accurate and 
reliable height and weight measurements), the frequency of reporting, 
the planned equipment to be used, methods for calculating the planned 
sampling frame (if the applicant would use sampling), the policies used 
to ensure student privacy during measurement, how the data would be 
secured to protect student confidentiality, who would have access to 
the data, how long the data will be kept, and what will happen to the 
data after that time. Applicants that intend to inform parents of their 
student's weight status must include plans for notifying parents of 
that status, and must include their plan for ensuring that resources 
are available for safe and effective follow-up with trained medical 
care providers;
    (c) Create a plan to notify parents of the BMI assessment and to 
allow parents to opt out of the BMI assessment and reasonable 
notification of their choice to opt out. Unless the BMI assessment is 
permitted or required by State law, LEA applicants would be required to 
detail their policies for providing reasonable notice of the adoption 
or continued use of such policies directly to the parents of the 
students enrolled in the LEA's schools served by the agency. At a 
minimum, the LEA would have to provide such notice at least annually, 
at the beginning of the school year and within a reasonable period of 
time after any

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substantive change in such policies, pursuant to the Protection of 
Pupil Rights Amendment, 20 U.S.C. Section 1232h(c)(2)(A); and
    (d) De-identify the student information (such as by removing the 
student's name and any identifying information from the record and 
assigning a record code \14\), aggregate the BMI data to the school or 
district level, and make the aggregate data publicly available and 
easily accessible to the public annually. Applicants would need to 
describe their plan for the level of reporting they plan to use, 
depending on the size of the population, such as at the district level 
or the school level. Applicants would also be required to detail in 
their application their plan for how these data will be used in 
coordination with other required data for the program, such as fitness, 
physical activity, and nutritional intake measures, and how the 
combination of these measures will be used to improve physical 
education programming and policy.
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    \14\ LEAs are subject to the Family Educational Rights and 
Privacy Act and must de-identify education records based on 
regulations issued by the Department of Education in December, 2008. 
More information can be found at: 
http://www.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/pdf/ferparegs.pdf. 
CBO applicants should follow all applicable 
Federal, State, and local privacy laws and regulations regarding the 
de-identification of personal data.
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    On June 18, 1991, 17 Federal Departments and Agencies, including 
the Department of Education, adopted a common set of regulations known 
as the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects or ``Common 
Rule.'' See 34 CFR Part 97. Applicants that engage in BMI data 
collection may be subject to the U.S. Department of Education's 
Protection of Human Subjects regulations if the data are used in 
research funded by the Federal government or for any future research 
conducted by an institution that has adopted the Federal policy for all 
research of that institution. The regulations define research as ``a 
systematic investigation, including research development, testing and 
evaluation, designed to develop or contribute to generalizable 
knowledge. Activities which meet this definition constitute research 
for purposes of this policy, whether or not they are conducted or 
supported under a program which is considered research for other 
purposes. For example, some demonstration and service programs may 
include research activities.'' 34 CFR 97.102(d). Information on Human 
Subjects requirements is found at: 
http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocfo/humansub.html.
    Applications that do not provide a Program-Specific Assurance 
signed by an Authorized Representative committing the applicant to 
completing the tasks above during their project period would not be 
eligible for competitive preference points.
    In implementing this proposed priority, we would encourage 
applicants to consult with their partners to determine if and how any 
of the partners could contribute to the data collection, reporting, or 
potential referral processes.

Proposed Competitive Preference Priority 2--Partnerships Between 
Applicants and Supporting Community Entities

    Background:
    Most research demonstrates that to effectively change social norms 
and behaviors, coordinated, multi-component approaches and policies are 
necessary.\15\ As part of a comprehensive approach to encouraging youth 
to be more physically active and eat healthier foods, schools and 
communities should have common and consistent policies, practices, and 

expectations for healthy eating and physical activity and provide the 
opportunity for healthy lifestyle choices in all settings in which a 
child spends time, throughout the student's day, including before, 
during, and after school, as well as on weekends, holidays, and 
vacations.\16\
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    \15\ Institute of Medicine. Preventing Childhood Obesity: Health 
in the Balance. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2005.
    \16\ IOM (Institute of Medicine) and National Research Council. 
2009. Local Government Actions to Prevent Childhood Obesity. 
Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
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    This type of community effort requires a sustained commitment from 
LEAs and schools, local government, community-based organizations 
(CBOs), the health sector, businesses, parents, and community members. 
Schools have a critical role to play in teaching students about 
physical activity, fitness, and healthy choices, and providing 
opportunities to practice making healthy choices throughout the day. 
But students spend a significant amount of time outside of school, 
which makes it important to implement a consistent community approach 
that reinforces and supports lessons and messages that are taught and 
learned in schools. For example, CBOs, particularly those CBOs that 
provide before- or after-school or summer programs, can play an 
important role in supplementing the skills and concepts that students 
learn in school. CBOs can also help LEAs target specific populations of 
students who may be underserved or at higher risk of becoming 
overweight or obese, or provide additional expertise in such areas as 
nutrition instruction.
    We have found that CBOs that have received PEP grants function 
optimally when they work collaboratively with one or more schools in 
the area served by the project. Grantees that conduct their projects 
separately from a school's or an LEA's efforts are often less familiar 
with State standards for physical education and, as a result, struggle 
to develop projects that help students meet or exceed these standards. 
Some CBOs also find it challenging to attract students to their 
programs, maintain the students' attendance at their programs, and 
deliver services that complement those that schools are already 
providing. A partnership between a CBO and an LEA or school should help 
ensure that these challenges will be addressed.
    Although some current grantees' communities may be engaged in 
efforts to improve physical activity and nutrition, these efforts are 
not always coordinated with the PEP grant, often resulting in 
disjointed and inconsistent efforts to improve physical activity and 
nutrition policy and programs in schools and communities. Thus, a more 
coordinated effort would improve the community's ability to positively 
affect youth physical activity participation, childhood nutrition, and 
fitness, and prevent and reduce the trends of overweight and obese 
youth by fundamentally changing the policies and practices of the 
settings where children spend their time before, during, and after 
school.
    We also believe that a formal partnership agreement will 
institutionalize this collaboration and ensure that local leadership is 
committed to investing in these efforts. Applicants might leverage 
these formal partnerships to secure the required matching funds for a 
PEP grant, such as through donated time, expertise, and other 
resources. Further, partners from public health agencies might also 
increase applicants' awareness of best practices and research-based 
approaches in the public health field, as well as connect applicants to 
other related efforts in the community and to potential funding 
streams, which could increase the likelihood of the PEP project being 
sustained after the end of Federal funding.
    Proposed Competitive Preference Priority:
    We propose giving a competitive preference priority to an applicant 
that includes in its application an agreement that details the 
participation of required partners, as defined in this notice. The 
agreement would have to include a

[[Page 12526]]

description of: (1) Each partner's roles and responsibilities in the 
project; (2) if and how each partner will contribute to the project, 
including any contribution to the local match; (3) an assurance that 
the application was developed after timely and meaningful consultation 
between the required parties, as defined in this notice; and (4) a 
commitment to work together to reach the desired goals and outcomes of 
the project. The partner agreement would be required to be signed by 
the Authorized Representative of each of the required partners and by 
other partners as available and appropriate.
    For an LEA applicant, we propose that this partnership agreement 
must include: (1) The LEA; (2) at least one CBO; (3) a local public 
health entity, as defined in this notice; (4) the LEA's food service or 
child nutrition director; and (5) the head of the local government, as 
defined in this notice.
    For a CBO applicant, we propose that the partnership agreement must 
include: (1) The CBO; (2) a local public health entity, as defined in 
this notice; (3) a local organization supporting nutrition or healthy 
eating, as defined in this notice; (4) the head of the local 
government, as defined in this notice; and (5) the LEA from which the 
largest number of students expected to participate in the CBO's project 
attend. If the CBO applicant is a school, such as a parochial or other 
private school, the applicant would need to describe its school as part 
of the partnership agreement but would not be required to provide an 
additional signature from a different LEA or school. A CBO applicant 
that is a school and serves its own population of students would be 
required also to include another community CBO as part of its 
partnership and include the head of that CBO as a signatory on the 
partnership agreement.
    Although partnerships with other parties are required, the eligible 
applicant would have to retain the administrative and fiscal control of 
the project.
    Types of Priorities:
    When inviting applications for a competition using one or more 
priorities, we designate the type of each priority as absolute, 
competitive preference, or invitational through a notice in the Federal 
Register. The effect of each type of priority follows:
    Absolute priority: Under an absolute priority, we consider only 
applications that meet the priority (34 CFR 75.105(c)(3)).
    Competitive preference priority: Under a competitive preference 
priority, we give competitive preference to an application by (1) 
awarding additional points, depending on the extent to which the 
application meets the priority (34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i)); or (2) 
selecting an application that meets the priority over an application of 
comparable merit that does not meet the priority (34 CFR 
75.105(c)(2)(ii)).
    Invitational priority: Under an invitational priority, we are 
particularly interested in applications that meet the priority. 
However, we do not give an application that meets the priority a 
preference over other applications (34 CFR 75.105(c)(1)).
    Proposed Requirements:
    Background:
    The Department believes that the following proposed requirements 
will result in PEP projects that are more likely to have an impact on 
children's health, fitness levels, and dietary habits.
    Proposed Requirements:
    The Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools 
proposes the following requirements for this program. We may apply one 
or more of these requirements in any year in which this program is in 
effect.

Proposed Requirement 1--Align Project Goals With Identified Needs Using 
the School Health Index

    Background:
    In order to ensure that PEP projects meet the needs of the schools 
and communities they are intended to serve, it is critical that the 
nutrition and physical education program needs, as well as the policies 
that support them, be assessed. The CDC's Division of Adolescent and 
School Health has developed the School Health Index (SHI), a self-
assessment and planning tool that schools can use to assess their 
student health policies and programs and their ``school health 
environment.'' The SHI includes eight self-assessment modules: (1) 
School Health and Safety Policies and Environment; (2) Health 
Education; (3) Physical Education and Other Physical Activity Programs; 
(4) Nutrition Services; (5) Health Services; (6) Counseling, 
Psychological, and Social Services; (7) Health Promotion for Staff; and 
(8) Family and Community Involvement. The SHI enables schools to 
develop an action plan for improving student health, which can be 
incorporated into the School Health Improvement Plan.
    CDC has developed two forms of the SHI, one for elementary schools 
and one for middle and high schools. Although much of the content is 
identical on each, there are some differences that reflect the 
developmental differences between elementary school students and middle 
and high school students.
    Completing the SHI allows a school to assess its health policies 
and practices and to compare those policies and practices with national 
standards and recommendations. The CDC estimates that undertaking the 
Physical Education and Other Physical Activity Programs and Nutrition 
Services SHI modules will take approximately one to three hours. For 
more information about the SHI, please see 
http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth/SHI.
    In the context of PEP, we believe that the SHI will provide 
applicants with a framework for assessing their strengths and 
weaknesses, which can then be used to design programs based on 
identified gaps and plans to address these gaps. We have found that 
many PEP applicants have not undertaken this type of self-assessment 
prior to submitting their grant applications and, not having done so, 
have created programs and policies that are not responsive to their 
site's needs or aligned with best practices in the field.
    Because the SHI must be done at the school-building level, CBOs 
cannot undertake the SHI without the support and participation of a 
school or LEA. Therefore, we suggest that CBO applicants collaborate 
with an identified school or LEA partner to complete the physical 
activity and nutrition questions in modules 1-4 of the SHI.
    To meet this requirement, CBO applicants that do not collaborate 
with an LEA or school may propose and use a local needs assessment tool 
that analyzes the physical activity and nutrition environments at the 
community level and, ideally, at the CBO site itself. The CBO applicant 
would need to specify the local needs assessment tool used, as well as 
the results of the assessment. The applicant's program must be designed 
to address the needs and gaps identified through the needs assessment.
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that applicants be required to complete the physical 
activity and nutrition questions in Modules 1-4 of the CDC's SHI self-
assessment tool and to develop project goals and plans that address the 
identified needs. Modules 1-4 are School Health and Safety Policies and 
Environment, Health Education, Physical Activity and Other Physical 
Activity Programs, and Nutrition Services. The applicant would use the 
SHI self-assessment to develop a School Health Improvement Plan focused 
on improving these issues, and design an initiative that addresses 
their identified gaps and weaknesses. Applicants would be required to 
include their Overall Score Card for the questions answered

[[Page 12527]]

in modules 1-4 in their application, and correlate their School Health 
Improvement Plan to their project design. Grantees would also be 
required to complete the same modules of the SHI at the end of the 
project period and submit the Overall Score Card from the second 
assessment in their final reports to demonstrate SHI completion and 
program improvement as a result of PEP funding.
    If a CBO applicant (unless the CBO is a school) is in a partner 
agreement with an LEA or school, it would be required to collaborate 
with its partner or partners to complete modules 1-4 of the SHI.
    Alternatively, if the CBO has not identified a school or LEA 
partner, the CBO would be required to use an alternative needs 
assessment tool to assess the nutrition and physical activity 
environment in the community for children. CBO applicants would be 
required to include their overall findings from the community needs 
assessment and correlate their findings with their project design. 
Grantees would also be required to complete the same needs assessment 
at the end of their project and submit their findings in their final 
reports to demonstrate the completion of the assessment and program 
involvement as a result of PEP funding.

Proposed Requirement 2--Nutrition- and Physical Activity-Related 
Policies

    Background:
    In recent years, research has shown that interventions to change 
behaviors and develop healthy habits, including physical activity and 
healthy eating, cannot rely on instruction alone.\17\ Although 
interventions that focus on a single element of PEP may produce 
positive behavior changes, they typically result in smaller effects 
than those produced by comprehensive, multi-sector interventions that 
include changes to programs and curricula and create or enhance 
policies encouraging physical activity and healthy eating choices.\18\ 
Applicants can identify physical activity and nutrition policies to 
address using their State's standards for physical education and the 
results from their SHI assessment.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ Institute of Medicine. Preventing Childhood Obesity: Health 
in the Balance. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2005.
    \18\ Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Research also shows that policy interventions and environmental 
changes can promote desirable behaviors and discourage negative 
behaviors.\19\ \20\ To encourage students to eat more healthy foods in 
and out of school, policies might include those governing the sale of 
``competitive foods'' \21\ at school, and food placement and pricing in 
cafeterias; policies on vending machines and on food sold as 
fundraisers; developing partnerships with farms or farmers' markets; 
adopting the recent Institute of Medicine recommendations for school 
meals that include more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-
fat dairy products ; \22\ or creating school or community gardens.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \19\ Peterson D, Zeger S, Remington P, Anderson P. The effect of 
state cigarette tax increases on cigarette sales, 1985-1988. 
American Journal of Public Health. 82(1): 94-96.
    \20\ French S, Story M, Breitlow K, Baxter J, Hannan P, Snyder 
M. Pricing and promotion effects on low-fat vending and snack 
purchases: The CHIPS study. American Journal of Public Health. 
91(1): 112-117.
    \21\ ``Competitive foods'' are defined as any foods and 
beverages sold at a school separately from the US Department of 
Agriculture's school meal programs.
    \22\ Institute of Medicine. 2010, School Meals: Building Blocks 
for Healthy Children. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Physical activity-related policy improvements that might enhance 
the applicant's programs include, but are not limited to: staffing 
policies that enable a physical educator to coordinate, plan, and 
direct the comprehensive program related to all physical activity 
efforts in the school, including those related to policy; integrating 
physical activity into the classroom to foster learning and increase 
children's physical activity; removing barriers to enable children to 
walk or bike to school or in the community; encouraging time for 
recess; developing and implementing joint-use agreements for use of 
facilities or equipment between schools and communities or community 
groups; providing supervision of play areas during out-of-school time; 
altering bus schedules to facilitate after-school program 
participation; establishing time requirements for physical education; 
requiring certification and professional development for physical 
education teachers; setting class size limits; and reviewing the use of 
waivers that allow students to opt out of physical education class.
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that grantees be required to develop, update, or enhance 
physical activity policies and food- and nutrition-related policies 
that promote healthy eating and physical activity throughout students' 
everyday lives, as part of their PEP projects. Applicants would 
describe in their application their current policy framework, areas of 
focus, and the planned process for policy development, implementation, 
review, and monitoring. Grantees would be required to detail at the end 
of their project period in their final reports the physical activity 
and nutrition policies selected and how the policies improved through 
the course of the project.
    Applicants would be required to sign a Program-Specific Assurance 
that commits them to developing, updating, or enhancing these policies 
during the project period. Applicants that do not submit such a 
Program-Specific Assurance signed by the applicant's Authorized 
Representative would be ineligible for the competition.

Proposed Requirement 3--Linkage With Local Wellness Policies

    Background:
    The local wellness policy provision of the Child Nutrition Act of 
2004 (Pub. L. 108-265) requires that each LEA participating in a 
program authorized by the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act 
(42 U.S.C. 1751 et seq.) or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (42 U.S.C. 
1771 et seq.) have a local wellness policy beginning in school year 
2006-2007.
    Under these provisions, a local wellness policy, at a minimum, 
includes goals for nutrition education, physical activity, and other 
school-based activities designed to promote student wellness; nutrition 
guidelines for all foods available on each school campus; guidelines 
for reimbursable school meals that are no less restrictive than the 
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulations and guidelines; and a 
plan for measuring implementation, including designation of one or more 
persons at the LEA or school level charged with operational 
responsibility for ensuring that the school meets the local wellness 
policies. In addition, parents, students, and various other 
``stakeholders'' must be involved in the development of the local 
wellness policy.
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that applicants that are participating in a program 
authorized by the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act or the 
Child Nutrition Act of 1966 must describe in their applications their 
school district's established local wellness policy and how the 
proposed PEP project will align with and support, complement, and 
enhance the implementation of the applicant's local wellness policy. 
The LEA's local wellness policy should address all requirements in the 
Child Nutrition Act of 2004.

[[Page 12528]]

    We propose that CBO applicants describe in their applications how 
their proposed projects will enhance or support the intent of the local 
wellness policies of their LEA partner(s), if they are working in a 
partnership.
    If an applicant or a member of its partnership does not participate 
in the school lunch program authorized by the Richard B. Russell 
National School Lunch Act or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966, it would 
not necessarily have a local wellness policy and, thus, would not be 
required to meet this requirement or adopt a local wellness policy. 
However, we would encourage such applicants to develop and adopt a 
local wellness policy, consistent with the provisions in the Richard B. 
Russell National School Lunch Act or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 in 
conjunction with its PEP project.
    Applicants would be required to sign a Program-Specific Assurance 
that commits them to align their PEP project with the district's Local 
Wellness Policy, if applicable. Applicants that do not submit a Program 
Specific Assurance signed by the applicant's Authorized Representative 
would be ineligible for the competition.

Proposed Requirement 4--Linkages With Federal, State, and Local 
Initiatives

    Background:
    We believe that projects should conduct their activities in a 
manner that is coordinated, to the extent possible, with other, similar 
ongoing or planned State or local health and wellness initiatives.
    For example, PEP projects, through their support of physical 
activity and nutrition instruction initiatives, complement the CDC's 
Coordinated School Health framework. This framework is a systemic model 
that integrates the basic, minimum components necessary for promoting 
the health and safety of students in schools. There are eight 
components of the Coordinated School Health Program: (1) Health 
Education; (2) Physical Education; (3) Health Services; (4) Nutrition 
Services; (5) Counseling and Psychological Services; (6) Healthy School 
Environments; (7) Health Promotion for Staff; and (8) Family and 
Community Involvement.
    PEP projects could also complement the USDA's Team Nutrition 
initiative, which provides training and technical assistance for food 
service professionals, nutrition instruction for children and their 
caregivers, and school and community support for creating healthy 
school environments that are conducive to healthy eating and physical 
activity. More information on Team Nutrition can be found at: 
http://www.teamnutrition.usda.gov.
    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will also be 
providing funds to local public health departments to create community-
level interventions to address obesity trends in both adults and 
children. This initiative funded under the American Recovery and 
Reinvestment Act, specifically the ``Recovery Act Communities Putting 
Prevention to Work--Community Initiative,'' focuses on developing and 
promoting partnerships, programmatic support, community mentoring, and 
evaluation to achieve the following prevention outcomes: (1) Increased 
levels of physical activity; (2) improved nutrition; (3) decreased 
overweight/obesity prevalence; (4) decreased smoking prevalence and 
decreasing teen smoking initiation; and (5) decreased exposure to 
second-hand smoke. More information on this program can be found at: 
http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/recovery/. Applications for grants under 
this HHS program were due December 1, 2009, but grantees are not likely 
to be announced until after PEP's application period would close. As 
such, PEP applicants would only have to agree to coordinate efforts 
funded under this HHS program with activities funded by PEP should 
their communities receive both grants.
    Many other Federal, State, and local initiatives also work to 
promote healthy nutrition and physical activity and, if applicable, 
should be coordinated with PEP project efforts. These other programs 
include, but are not limited to, Alliance for a Healthier Generation 
(http://www.healthiergeneration.org/), Farm-to-School initiatives 
(http://www.farmtoschool.org/), the YMCA's Pioneering Healthier 
Communities (http://www.ymca.net/ activateamerica/), Action for Healthy 
Kids State or local teams (http://www.actionforhealthykids.org/), and 
USDA's HealthierUS School Challenge 
(http://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/healthierus/index.html).
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that if an applicant is implementing the CDC's 
Coordinated School Health program, it be required to coordinate project 
activities with that initiative and describe in its application how the 
proposed PEP project will be coordinated and integrated with the 
program.
    We propose that if an applicant receives funding under the USDA's 
Team Nutrition initiative (Team Nutrition Training Grants), the 
applicant must describe in its application how the proposed PEP project 
supports the efforts of this initiative.
    We propose that an applicant for a PEP project in a community that 
receives a grant under the Recovery Act Communities Putting Prevention 
to Work--Community Initiative must agree to coordinate its PEP project 
efforts with those under the Recovery Act Communities Putting 
Prevention to Work-Community Initiative.
    We propose that applicants and PEP-funding projects must 
complement, rather than duplicate, existing, ongoing or new efforts 
whose goals and objectives are to promote physical activity and healthy 
eating or help students meet their State standards for physical 
education.
    Applicants would be required to sign a Program-Specific Assurance 
that commits them to align their PEP project with the Coordinated 
School Health program, Team Nutrition Training Grant, Recovery Act 
Communities Putting Prevention to Work- Community Initiative, or any 
other similar Federal, State, or local initiatives. Applicants that do 
not submit a Program Specific Assurance signed by the applicant's 
Authorized Representative would be ineligible for the competition.

Proposed Requirement 5--Updates to Physical Education and Nutrition 
Instruction Curricula

    Background:
    Having a strong and appropriate curriculum is critical to ensuring 
that students develop and practice new skills. Historically, many PEP 
grantees purchased or designed new curricula before they had fully 
assessed the needs of their population or the capacity of their staff 
to implement that curriculum. In our experience, most PEP grantees do 
not implement a systematic, sequential nutrition instruction 
curriculum, but, rather, rely on one-time nutrition modules to provide 
instruction on healthy eating.
    The CDC's Physical Education Curriculum Analysis Tool (PECAT) helps 
LEAs and others conduct a clear, complete, and consistent analysis of 
written physical education curricula, based upon national physical 
education standards. This free tool helps LEAs analyze written physical 
education curricula and can serve as a guide in developing or 
identifying a curriculum aligned with the LEA's goals and objectives 
for physical education programs that help them make progress toward 
meeting State standards for physical education.
    The CDC's Health Education Curriculum Analysis Tool (HECAT) is a

[[Page 12529]]

similar free tool, comparable to the PECAT, used to assess health 
education curricula, and is intended to help LEAs, schools, and others 
conduct a clear, complete, and consistent analysis of health education 
curricula based on the National Health Education Standards and CDC's 
Characteristics of Effective Health Education Curricula. The HECAT 
results can help LEAs or CBOs select or develop appropriate and 
effective health education curricula and improve the delivery of health 
education. The HECAT can be customized to meet local needs and conform 
to the State or LEA curriculum requirements. The HECAT's healthy eating 
module can be used to determine the extent to which curricula are 
likely to enable students to master the essential concepts and skills 
that promote healthy eating.
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that applicants that plan to use grant-related funds, 
including Federal and non-Federal matching funds, to create, update, or 
enhance their physical education or nutrition education curricula be 
required to use the Physical Education Curriculum Analysis Tool (PECAT) 
and submit their overall PECAT scorecard, and the curriculum 
improvement plan from PECAT. We also propose that applicants that plan 
to use grant-related funds, including Federal and non-Federal matching 
funds to create, update, or enhance their nutrition instruction in 
health education be required to complete the healthy eating module of 
the Health Education Curriculum Analysis Tool (HECAT). Applicants must 
use the curriculum improvement plan from the PECAT to identify 
curricular changes to be addressed during the funding period. 
Applicants must also describe how the HECAT assessment would be used to 
guide nutrition instruction curricular changes. If an applicant is not 
proposing to use grant-related funds for physical education or 
nutrition instruction curricula, it would not need to use these tools.

Proposed Requirement 6--Equipment Purchases

    Background:
    We have found that some PEP grantees have used a significant 
portion of their PEP funds to purchase physical education equipment but 
that the use of this equipment is not always tied to a quality physical 
education program. Although equipment purchases may be essential to the 
project, these purchases alone do not constitute a comprehensive 
program. We have also found that PEP grantees have not always tied the 
use of that equipment to their physical education curriculum or 
physical education State standards. Because the needs of students or 
staff may not have been considered before equipment was purchased, we 
have found that equipment purchased under this program did not always 
complement ongoing instructional efforts, was not part of a sustainable 
program, and was sometimes used neither throughout the duration of the 
PEP program nor after the grant period ended.
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that purchases of equipment with PEP funds or related to 
grant activities (including equipment purchased with funds offered to 
meet the program's matching requirement) must be aligned with the 
curricular components of the applicant's physical education and 
nutrition program. Applicants must commit to aligning the students' use 
of the equipment with PEP elements applicable to their projects, 
identified in priority 1, and any applicable curricula by signing a 
Program Specific Assurance. Applicants that do not submit a Program 
Specific Assurance signed by the applicant's Authorized Representative 
would be ineligible for the competition.

Proposed Requirement 7--Increasing Transparency and Accountability

    Background:
    Another critical component to program success is ensuring that 
projects are meeting their desired goals by increasing ``transparency'' 
and accountability to parents, students, policy-makers, and the 
community. Regularly sharing information with parents about the work of 
the grantee would help them understand and reinforce lessons learned 
before, during, and after school, and would encourage students to make 
healthy choices.
    Sharing information with local policy-makers should result in 
increased accountability and help policy-makers understand the 
challenges children face in making healthy choices. This increased 
level of accountability, in turn, would encourage local policy-makers 
to invest in promising programs and make budget and policy decisions 
that would complement, support, and enhance each project's efforts.
    Program information provided to the community would include 
program-related measures related to the changes made by the LEAs or 
CBOs and could potentially be compared to those made in other 
communities. Additionally, reports to parents of students under 18 
years old would include information on the progress of their child on 
measures related to that child's fitness and nutrition.
    Proposed Requirement:
    We propose that grantees create or use existing reporting 
mechanisms to provide information on students' progress, in the 
aggregate, on the key program indicators, as described in this notice 
and required under the Government Performance and Results Act, as well 
as on any unique project-level measures proposed in the application. 
Grantees that are educational agencies or institutions would be subject 
to applicable Federal, State, and local privacy provisions, including 
the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act--a law that generally 
prohibits the non-consensual disclosure of personally identifiable 
information in a student's education record. All grantees must comply 
with applicable Federal, State, and local privacy provisions. The 
aggregate-level information should be easily accessible by the public, 
such as posted on the grantee's or a partner's Web site. Applicants 
would be required to describe in their application the planned method 
for reporting.
    Applicants would be required to commit to reporting information to 
the public, including parents of students under 18 years old, by 
signing a Program Specific Assurance. Applicants that do not submit a 
Program Specific Assurance signed by the applicant's Authorized 
Representative would be ineligible for the competition.

Proposed Requirement 8--Participation in a National Evaluation

    Background:
    We have funded nine cohorts under the PEP program but have not yet 
undertaken a national evaluation to assess how the program has been 
implemented across sites. In 2008, the Department initiated a national 
evaluation effort to assess the PEP's processes and outcomes. The 
evaluation will use the grantees funded in FY 2010 for a national 
evaluation, and will follow this cohort through at least two years of 
implementation. We continue to collaborate with the contractor to 
identify an appropriate study design, which will be developed based on 
the final priorities and design of the FY 2010 PEP competition.
    Proposed Requirement:
    The applicant must provide documentation of its commitment to 
participate in the U.S. Department of Education's evaluation. An LEA 
applicant must include a letter from the research office or research 
board approving its participation in the evaluation (if approval is 
needed), and

[[Page 12530]]

a letter from the Authorized Representative agreeing to participate in 
the evaluation.

Proposed Requirement 9--Required Performance Measures and Data 
Collection Methodology

    Background:
    Since 2006, PEP grantees have been required to report on two 
performance measures, established under the Government Performance and 
Results Act (GPRA). The PEP GPRA measures have been: (1) The percentage 
of elementary school students who engage in 150 minutes of moderate to 
vigorous physical activity per week; and (2) The percentage of middle 
and/or high school students who engage in 225 minutes of moderate to 
vigorous physical activity per week.
    Although these GPRA measures are a marked improvement from past 
GPRA measures under this program, they are not consistent with the 
physical activity guidelines that recommend 60 minutes of daily 
physical activity for children and adolescents.\23\ In addition, we 
have also found that grantees collect and report their data in a 
variety of ways, which makes data aggregation and comparability across 
and between cohorts difficult.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \23\ Department of Health and Human Services. Office of Disease 
Prevention and Health Promotion. 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines 
for Americans. Washington, DC, 2008.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The proposed changes to the PEP program, as described in this 
notice, would require a broader set of indicators to reflect the full 
range of activities to be undertaken. Therefore, we propose new GPRA 
measures that would provide comprehensive data on the following: 1. 
Physical activity levels; 2. Fitness levels; and 3. Nutritional habits 
of students involved in the PEP program. The proposed measures would 
require that districts aggregate data at the district and school level 
to facilitate program evaluation, rather than the assessment of 
individual students.
    In addition to proposing new GPRA performance measures, this notice 
proposes a standard data collection methodology for each new proposed 
GPRA measure. The data collection methodologies proposed here are 
considered valid by researchers in the fields of physical activity and 
nutrition.
    The first new GPRA measure is the extent to which grantees increase 
the number of students who are physically active for at least 60 
minutes a day. The proposed methods for assessing this proposed GPRA 
measure are pedometry for students in grades K-12 and an additional 
self-report questionnaire for students in grades 5-12. Students would 
wear pedometers all day for four consecutive days (K-6), and eight 
consecutive days for students in 7th-12th grades.\24\ One of the 
measurement days must be a weekend day. This data collection 
methodology is a valid and reliable protocol for assessing children's 
physical activity throughout the day, and has been used for many years 
in many settings with large numbers of students.\25\ \26\ \27\ Using 
pedometers would provide the number of steps students accumulate during 
the day and the number of minutes of students' activity during the day, 
using specific formulas to convert steps counts into minutes of 
physical activity. In addition, students in grades 5-12 would complete 
the three-day physical activity recall. This self-report would ask 
students to evaluate their activity based on each 30-minute period 
between 7:00 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. based on activity type, intensity, and 
length of time. A self-report measure is a reliable, cost-effective 
means of gathering information from participants in this age range and 
provides important qualitative information that can be used to inform 
or modify the physical activity program.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \24\ Students will be instructed on how to wear the pedometer 
and will be asked to place the pedometer on in the morning and 
remove the pedometer in the evening, during bathing/showering, or 
when they are swimming. Students can be introduced to pedometers and 
provided an orientation to pedometers during physical education. 
This phase exposes them to how pedometers work, allows them to 
explore moving with a pedometer, provides them the opportunity to 
put the pedometer on, and allows the PE teacher or physical activity 
leader to emphasize that pedometers are like any PE equipment that 
must be returned.
    \25\ Craig C, Tudor-Locke C, Cragg S, Cameron C. Process and 
treatment of pedometer data collection for youth: The Canadian 
Physical Activity Levels among Youth Study. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 
2010; 42(3): 430-435.
    \26\ Tudor-Locke C, Lee S, Morgan C, Beighle A, Pangrazi R. 
Children's pedometer-determined physical activity during the 
segmented school day. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 2006; 38(10): 1732-
1738.
    \27\ LeMasurier G, Beighle A, Corbin C, Barst P, Morgan C, 
Pangrazi R, Wilde B, Vincent S. Pedometer-determined physical 
activity levels of youth. Journal of Physical Activity and Health. 
2005; 2: 159-168.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The second proposed GPRA performance measure is student fitness 
levels. We propose that grantees measure fitness levels by assessing a 
student's cardiorespiratory or aerobic capacity fitness using the 20-
meter shuttle run. Specifically, grantees would assess the number of 
students in middle and high school who achieve age-appropriate 
cardiovascular fitness levels using the 20-meter shuttle run. 
Researchers have determined that this type of assessment reliably 
measures a student's cardiovascular fitness, a key health and fitness 
measure.
    The third proposed GPRA measure would focus on students' 
nutritional habits by assessing daily fruit and vegetable consumption. 
This measure would not only reflect changes in students' behaviors and 
their internalization of lessons learned, but potentially also changes 
to the offerings available to students as a result of the PEP program's 
focus on changes to nutrition policies.
    We propose that grantees assess nutritional habits for high school 
students by administering five designated fruit and vegetable questions 
from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey.\28\ We are seeking comment on how 
grantees could accurately assess nutritional habits of elementary and 
middle school students.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \28\ The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Youth Risk 
Behavior Survey (YRBS). More information on the YRBS can be found at 
http://www.cdc.gov/healthyyouth.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We propose that all grantees use the methodologies described so 
that we can collect consistent data from all grantees about program 
success and improve the quality of the PEP program evaluation. In 
addition, Department staff would be more easily able to provide 
technical assistance to grantees on the proposed data collection 
methodologies.
    Many districts are already using these indicators and 
methodologies. If LEAs or communities are using the methodologies 
described, they may use their existing systems to capture and report on 
these indicators for their proposed PEP project.
    Proposed Requirement:
    Grantees would be required to collect and report data on three GPRA 
measures using uniform data collection methods. Measure one would 
assess physical activity levels: The number of students that engage in 
60 minutes of daily physical activity. Grantees would be required to 
use pedometers for students in grades K-12 and an additional 3-Day 
Physical Activity Recall (3DPAR) instrument to collect data on students 
in grades 5-12.
    Measure two would focus on student fitness levels: The number of 
students who achieve age-appropriate cardiovascular fitness levels. 
Grantees would be required to use the 20-meter shuttle run to assess 
cardiovascular fitness in middle and high school students.
    Measure three would require grantees to measure the percentage of 
students

[[Page 12531]]

served by the grant who consumed fruit two or more times per day and 
vegetables three or more times per day. Programs serving high school 
students would be required to use the nutrition-related questions from 
the Youth Risk Behavior Survey to determine the number of students who 
meet these goals. We request comment on how grantees serving elementary 
and/or middle students might assess nutritional intake by, for example, 
using a set of questions similar to those in the Youth Risk Behavior 
Survey, to assess nutritional intake of these students. Depending on 
the comments received, we may recommend or require a specific 
methodology to be used with elementary and middle school students to 
assess nutritional intake for these students.
    For each measure, grantees would be required to collect and 
aggregate data from four discrete data collection periods throughout 
each year. During the first year, grantees would have an additional 
data collection period prior to program implementation to collect 
baseline data.
    Proposed Definitions:
    Background:
    We are proposing the following definitions to describe the specific 
and appropriate partners whose participation would be most likely to 
result in enhanced program implementation and sustainability and that 
applicants will designate in their applications.
    Proposed Definitions:
    The Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools 
proposes the following definition for this program.
    We may apply one or more of these definitions in any year in which 
this program is in effect.
    Organization supporting nutrition or healthy eating means a local 
public or private non-profit school, health-related professional 
organization, or local business that has demonstrated interest and 
efforts in promoting student health or nutrition. This term would 
include, but not be limited to LEAs (particularly an LEA's school food 
or child nutrition director), grocery stores, supermarkets, 
restaurants, corner stores, farmers' markets, farms, other private 
businesses, hospitals, institutions of higher education, Cooperative 
Extension Service and 4H Clubs, and community gardening organizations, 
when such entities have demonstrated a clear intent to promote student 
health and nutrition or have made tangible efforts to do so. This 
definition would not include representatives from trade associations or 
representatives from any organization representing any producers or 
marketers of food or beverage product(s).
    Head of local government means the party responsible for the civic 
functioning of the county, city, town, or municipality and includes, 
but is not limited to, the mayor, city manager, or county executive.
    Local public health entity means an administrative or service unit 
of local or State government concerned with health and carrying some 
responsibility for the health of a jurisdiction smaller than the State 
(except that for Rhode Island and Hawaii, because these States' health 
departments operate on behalf of local public health and have no sub-
State units, the definition would apply to the State health 
department).
    Final Priorities, Requirements, and Definitions:
    We will announce the final priorities, requirements, and 
definitions in a notice in the Federal Register. We will determine the 
final priorities, requirements, and definitions after considering 
responses to this notice and other information available to the 
Department. This notice does not preclude us from proposing additional 
priorities, requirements, definitions, or selection criteria, subject 
to meeting applicable rulemaking requirements.

    Note:  This notice does not solicit applications. In any year in 
which we choose to use one or more of these priorities, 
requirements, and definitions, we invite applications through a 
notice in the Federal Register.

    Executive Order 12866: This notice has been reviewed in accordance 
with Executive Order 12866. Under the terms of the order, we have 
assessed the potential costs and benefits of this proposed regulatory 
action.
    The potential costs associated with this proposed regulatory action 
are those resulting from statutory requirements and those we have 
determined as necessary for administering this program effectively and 
efficiently.
    In assessing the potential costs and benefits--both quantitative 
and qualitative--of this proposed regulatory action, we have determined 
that the benefits of the proposed priorities, requirements, and 
definitions justify the costs.
    We have determined, also, that this proposed regulatory action does 
not unduly interfere with State, local, and tribal governments in the 
exercise of their governmental functions.
    Discussion of Costs and Benefits: The potential costs associated 
with the proposed priorities and requirements are minimal while the 
potential benefits are significant.
    Grantees may anticipate costs in developing their partnerships and 
time spent in developing infrastructure for supporting integrated, 
comprehensive programming and policies, and building data and 
accountability systems and processes. Additional costs associated with 
developing a structure and system for conducting and analyzing BMI 
include identifying staff who can conduct the assessment, creating and 
implementing processes, and identifying methods for dissemination.
    The benefits include creating a comprehensive, coordinated program 
that is likely to be sustained after the end of the project period. 
Creating and leveraging community partners will allow grantees to 
amplify their project efforts and to increase the likelihood that the 
activities will become institutionalized. Grantees and the Department 
will also benefit from the improved focus on outcomes and 
accountability by uniformly tracking student-level indicators over 
time.

Regulatory Flexibility Act Certification

    The Secretary certifies that this proposed regulatory action will 
not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. The small entities that this proposed regulatory action will 
affect are small LEAs or nonprofit organizations applying for and 
receiving funds under this program. The Secretary believes that the 
costs imposed on applicants by the proposed priorities, requirements, 
and definitions would be limited to paperwork burden related to 
preparing an application and that the benefits of implementing these 
proposals would outweigh any costs incurred by applicants.
    Participation in this program is voluntary. For this reason, the 
proposed priorities, requirements, and definitions would impose no 
burden on small entities in general. Eligible applicants would 
determine whether to apply for funds, and have the opportunity to weigh 
the requirements for preparing applications, and any associated costs, 
against the likelihood of receiving funding and the requirements for 
implementing projects under the program. Eligible applicants most 
likely would apply only if they determine that the likely benefits 
exceed the costs of preparing an application. The likely benefits 
include the potential receipt of a grant as well as other benefits that 
may accrue to an entity through its development of an application, such 
as the use of that application to spur improvement in physical 
education planning without additional Federal funding.

[[Page 12532]]

    The U.S. Small Business Administration Size Standards defines as 
``small entities'' for-profit or nonprofit institutions with total 
annual revenue below $7,000,000 or, if they are institutions controlled 
by small governmental jurisdictions (that are comprised of cities, 
counties, towns, townships, villages, school districts, or special 
districts), with a population of less than 50,000. The Urban 
Institute's National Center for Charitable Statistics reported that of 
203,635 nonprofit organizations that had an educational mission and 
reported revenue to the IRS by July 2009, 200,342 (or about 98 percent) 
had revenues of less than $5 million. In addition, there are 12,484 
LEAs in the country that meet the definition of small entity. However, 
given program history, the Secretary believes that only a small number 
of these entities would be interested in applying for funds under this 
program, thus reducing the likelihood that the proposals contained in 
this notice would have a significant economic impact on small entities.
    Further, the proposed action may help small entities determine 
whether they have the interest, need, or capacity to implement 
activities under the program and, thus, prevent small entities that do 
not have such an interest, need, and capacity from absorbing the burden 
of applying.
    This proposed regulatory action would not have a significant 
economic impact on small entities once they receive a grant because 
they would be able to meet the costs of compliance using the funds 
provided under this program and with any funds they might obtain from 
external parties to fulfill the matching requirements of the program.
    The Secretary invites comments from small nonprofit organizations 
and small LEAs as to whether they believe this proposed regulatory 
action would have a significant economic impact on them and, if so, 
requests evidence to support that belief.
    Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive 
Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. One of the 
objectives of the Executive order is to foster an intergovernmental 
partnership and a strengthened federalism. The Executive order relies 
on processes developed by State and local governments for coordination 
and review of proposed Federal financial assistance.
    This document provides early notification of our specific plans and 
actions for this program.
    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, 
audiotape, or computer diskette) on request to the program contact 
person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
    Electronic Access to This Document: You can view this document, as 
well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) on the 
Internet at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/news/fedregister.
    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site.

    Note:  The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at: 
http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara/index.html.


    Dated: March 11, 2010.
Kevin Jennings,
Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools.
[FR Doc. 2010-5736 Filed 3-15-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P