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2011 Policy Symposium

The Physical Activity and Sport for People with Disabilities - Policy Symposium was a Strategic Planning Policy Conference on Physical Activity for Students with Disabilities, which took place on June 21- 22, 2011 at the US Access Board Conference Room in Washington, DC.

In June, 2010, following the concerted efforts of over 100 groups comprising the Inclusive Fitness Coalition (IFC),  the Government Accountability Office (GAO) completed its first ever study on the state of physical activity and athletic opportunities for students with disabilities.  As a result of the recommendations put forth by the GAO study, the Department of Education has committed to completing two policy undertakings by the end of this fiscal year:  

  • Clarify schools’ obligations under the Rehabilitation Act to provide athletic opportunities for students with disabilities.
  • Provide resources and facilitate information sharing to assist state and schools in serving students with disabilities in physical education (PE) and athletics.

Given the policy changes that are forthcoming from the Department of Education, the Inclusive Fitness Coalition with Georgetown University, hosted a policy symposium to bring together key stakeholders to create a community blueprint for action. Over the course of two days, leading experts developed a strategic plan for how various sectors can contribute to expanding school-based physical activity and athletic opportunities for students with disabilities.

The Agenda
June 21
Welcome; Key Note Panel
Key Note Panel: An overview of physical activity and sport for SWD
Working Group sessions
Breakout groups included:

  • Disability Sport –organizations providing sports opportunities for PWD
  • Disability Rights –organizations serving PWD across a variety of needs  
  • General Sport- sports organizations/entities that are not disability specific  
  • Research/Academic –academics and researchers in the disability, health, or sports arena
  • Health/Fitness –organizations working on promoting access to physical activity and/or healthy lifestyles
  • Grassroots –organizations working with PWD on the ground level by providing services and/or sports and physical activity programs
  • Government –government officials and policymakers

Develop integrated plan
The various stakeholder group plans were integrated into a master strategic planning document, identifying common themes and collective action points  

June 22, 2011
Congressional Visits
Visited with targeted members of Congress to discuss advancing physical activity and sport opportunities for students with disabilities

Documents to include in your packet to Congress:

Congress Letter

ED Letter

GAO Executive Summary

IFC Policy Briefing 2011_2012

IFC Policy Highlights

IFC_GAO study highlights

Policy Briefing Document



Contact List
To view the contact list of meeting attendees, click  here.

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