• Health and Wellness Education

    The Pittsburgh Public Schools Health and Physical Education Department is designed to create an equitable, accessible and high-quality standard-based educational experience for all students. The department and courses are designed to ensure and promote our students understand, identify, and participate in lifelong health and physical activity throughout their lifespan. The department understands the importance of ensuring all of our students comprehend the benefits, rationale, skills, and implementation of lifelong physical activity and fitness, character education, personal and community health, and provide opportunities to learn the skills necessary to apply each to their daily life. Furthermore, health and physical education integrates character, social, and emotional skills to aide in the development of the whole child.



    The Health and Physical Education programs aim to create lifelong health, physical activity, and fitness and assist in improving student achievement, attendance and graduations rates by engaging students in active participation, shared content integration, equitability, and culturally responsive practices that provides a connection to their school, community and the world. Through these factors Health and Physical Education courses will aide in creating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle now and throughout life, as well as characteristics such as the development and improvement of brain function, the ability to handle daily stressors, adversity, and overall wellbeing.



    The mission of the Health and Physical Education (HPE) Department is to offer an equitable, high-quality standards-based curriculum that provides the whole-child a variety of opportunities to be active and the development of understanding and importance of both how and why should apply these practices in order to live an healthy lifestyle that ensures the mind and body can function at it maximum potential. The HPE Department aims to ensure our students have a full foundation of both knowledge and application in the many aspects of physical fitness and activity, as well as personal and community health to warrants lifelong practices.


    Instructional Philosophy

    The Pittsburgh Public Schools Health and Physical Education Department believes in educating the whole child throughout their time at PPS. We believe in providing an accessible, equitable, high-quality standard-based curriculum that provides our students the both the understanding and application of the importance of being healthy and physically active throughout their lives.

    This begins in elementary with addressing foundational motor and movement skills, personal health concepts, character education and social emotional learning, and the understanding of the 5-components of fitness and expands into the secondary by addressing a variety of sport, physical activity, and fitness skills and strategies, personal and community health concepts, continued social emotional and character education, and functional fitness concepts, that will help ensure lifelong fitness, physical activity, healthy behaviors, community health, self- and social-awareness, leadership and cooperative skills, as well as multiple other beneficial characteristics and skills.


    Health and Wellness Education  

    The District understands the importance of health and wellness for all ages and individuals. 

    The District supports a planned, sequential, kindergarten through 12th grade health education curriculum involving skill-based and hands-on learning opportunities that addresses the physical, emotional, mental, behavioral, and social dimensions of health. Health education curriculum promotes lifelong health habits as part of a whole school, child and community experience. Additionally, the Early Childhood Programming provides introductory concepts of physical, mental, social and emotional health and wellness. 

    The curriculum focuses on health literacy to enhance each student’s independent thinking skills and decision-making and is empowered to enhance personal responsibility.

    Health education shall be taught by state-certified health education teachers. Health education instruction will be provided: a. For all students in grades K-8; and b. In grades 9-12 to enable students to meet and exceed the health education graduation requirement.

    Goals for the District’s health education program are to be developmentally appropriate and include culturally-responsive practices. This programming is designed to promote student overall health and wellness and shall be developed in accordance with Board policy. Such goals shall include, but not be limited to, physical health, including nutrition and physical activity, mental health, including self-awareness, self-management, and responsible decision making techniques and social emotional wellbeing, to include social awareness and relationship skills.

    The District’s health education program must be implemented in ways that recognize and value culturally, ethnically, and racially diverse backgrounds.

    Nutrition Education  

    The District aims to teach, model, encourage, and support healthy eating by students including provision of nutrition education and engaging in nutrition promotion. Nutrition education will be provided within the sequential, comprehensive health education program in accordance with curriculum regulations and the State and National Health Education Standards.

    Goals for the District’s health education program shall be designed to promote student wellness and shall be developed in accordance with Board policy. Such goals shall include, but not be limited to, goals for nutrition education and physical activity.

    The District will continue to utilize research-based practices, community partnerships, and other supports to provide students ample opportunities for nutrition education.

Physical activity game
  • Curriculum Department Contact Information


Student & Family Nutrition Resources

  • Nutrition Education Resources Explore these nutrition education resources to help you to integrate nutrition throughout the school day.
  • Making the Most of Mealtimes Here’s how students can get the most out of mealtime with their family.
  • Student School Food Survey Using student feedback can help you improve the meals served in the cafeteria and increase their satisfaction with the school meal program, ultimately increasing participation.
  • 5 Tips to Drink More Water
  • Healthy Ways to Reward Kids Review this resource to discover how to reward kids without the use of unhealthy foods.
  • Promoting and Integrating Healthy Messages in Your Classroom
  • Healthy Corner Store Swap Whether you are grocery shopping or grabbing an on-the-go snack, consider these healthy swap suggestions.
  • Eat Smart While Eating Out Sometimes eating out is necessary. Check out these simple tips for eating healthier while dining out. También disponible en español!
  • Quick, Healthy Meal Planning Check out these ideas for saving time and money while planning healthy meals at home.
  • Essential Topics on Healthy Eating
  • Grade Level Alignment to Essential Skills in Physical Activity and Healthy Eating