WASHINGTON, Aug. 7 (UPI) -- A report by a U.S. non-profit group warns schools need to improve the food they serve and increase the amount of exercise opportunities offered.
The report by Action for Healthy Kids comes two years after schools were federally mandated to implement "wellness policies" to improve nutrition at school and provide more opportunities for students to be physically active.
The report said the vast majority of school administrators -- superintendents, board members and principals -- and school food service professionals believe that their schools are already doing a good job limiting "junk foods" and offering healthy, youth-appealing food options. However, 82 percent of parents say schools need to work harder.
The National Association for Sport and Physical Education recommends that children engage in at least 60 minutes of age-appropriate physical activity most days of the week.
However, 1 of 3 elementary schools does not offer daily recess, and 4 percent offer daily physical education classes. Physical education declines as students go through school.
"The majority of parents have an interest in wanting schools to improve nutrition and physical activity opportunities, although less than 1 in 4 parents have contacted their school," Dr. David Satcher, former U.S. Surgeon General and of Action for Healthy Kids.