Physical Education

Physical Education is an integral part of total education of a child. It is the cornerstone in developing an active lifestyle, providing opportunities to guide young people in the process of becoming physically active for a lifetime. Quality physical education programs increase the physical competence, health-related fitness, self-responsibility, and enjoyment of physical activity for young people and includes the following: skill development, regular healthful physical activity, improved physical fitness, support for other subject areas, self-discipline, improved judgment, stress reduction, strengthened peer relations, improved self-confidence and self-esteem, and goal setting. The Nebraska Physical Education Standards serves as guidance to help schools achieve this goal.

Mission of Physical Education

Physical activity is critical to the development and maintenance of good health. The goal of physical education is to develop physically educated individuals who have the knowledge, skills, and confidence to enjoy a lifetime of healthful physical activity.

A physically educated person:

  • Demonstrates competency in motor skills and movement patterns needed to perform a variety of physical activities.
  • Demonstrates understanding of movement concepts, principles, strategies, and tactics as they apply to the learning and performance of physical activities.
  • Participates regularly in physical activity.
  • Achieves and maintains a health-enhancing level of physical fitness.
  • Exhibits responsible personal and social behavior that respects self and others in physical activity settings.
  • Values physical activity for health enjoyment challenge, self-expression and/or social interaction.

An appropriate physical education program ensures that individuals with disabilities have access to a program that enables them to achieve the same goals in physical education as their peers without disabilities. Students identified by an individualized education program (IEP) team who do not meet age appropriate curricular benchmarks should be provided the necessary supplementary aids and support services in the least restrictive environment. Instruction, equipment, activity rules, and the environmental set-up should be modified as necessary to provide an appropriate, safe, and comfortable educational setting.

Physical Education for Individuals with Disabilities: A Guide for Best Practices 

The purposes of this document are to provide adapted physical education teachers, physical education teachers, special education teachers, administrators, and parents the following:

  1. Adapted Physical Education best practice information that includes:
    • Compliance with federal and state laws and regulations.
    • NE adapted physical education service delivery options.
    • Collaboration for plans, procedures and program development.
  1. Adapted Physical Education resources for program development that include:
    • Sample goals and objectives.
    • Suggested assessment and evaluation tools.
    • Skills progression, modifications and adaptations.



in Lincoln from November 3-5, 2024



Shayla Ruth

Physical Education & Health Education Specialist

500 S. 84th St., 2nd Floor Lincoln NE, 68510-2611

P: (402) 405-1836



Marissa Payzant, Ed.D.

Director of Content Area Standards Office of Teaching, Learning, & Assessment

P: (402) 937-2070



Allyson DenBeste

Academic Officer

Office of Teaching, Learning, & Assessment

P: (531) 310-2897


Updated June 11, 2024 12:16pm