Funding Physical Education Programs

Christi Meyer is a long-time advocate for quality physical education programs. Over her career, she helped secure over $200,000 of grant funding for implementation of heart rate technology, fitness equipment, and PLT4M. 


While Christi has retired from teaching after over 35 years in the field, she is still sharing insights and ideas for PE programs across the country. Check out her actionable steps to funding physical education programs.

Challenges Of Funding Physical Education Programs


School districts have a lot of different school programs they need to consider funding. Therefore, it can often feel like there is a lack of funding for physical education in schools.


And while that might still be the case in some places, there are a lot of different places within school districts budgets that PE programs can tap into. For example, beyond just a PE budget, there are other types of funding streams like curriculum budgets, technology budgets, and other places to get funding.


And if there aren’t options within the school district, many teachers are encouraged to look for grant funds. But grant opportunities and grant applications can be challenging or intimidating to navigate.


While physical education teachers want to spend their time focusing on students, it is important to consider the power of funding physical education programs to empower new levels of learning and success.


Funding Physical Education Programs Webinar


Want to learn more about funding physical education programs with Christi Meyer? Check out the full professional development webinar hosted by PLT4M. Christi breaks down the key steps to success and provides an actionable timeline for schools looking to obtain grants for physical education. The steps include:


  • Build Your Team

  • Create a Promotional Toolbox

  • Complete Needs Assessment and Vision Board

  • Research and Find Grants

  • Talk with Grant Funders

  • Write The Grant

  • Grant Implementation & Fidelity

  • Grant Reporting


After completing this FREE webinar, teachers will receive a one hour professional development certificate of completion. Check it out!

Where To Start


We encourage you to check out the full webinar for all the insights and information on obtaining grant funds! But, below are some key takeaways from the first half of the presentation from Christi.


Christi breaks down where to start when it comes to consider funding physical education programs in public schools. These initial steps can help set school districts on the path for fully funding physical education and health education in schools.

Build Your Team


To get started, you need to build a team that will support funding physical education programs. Christi highlights three key places to build out your team:


  • Colleagues

  • Administration

  • Community Partner


“Whether you have a team of PE teachers of 1 or 10, you need to get creative with who is on your team. You need to think big picture about who you can include, but also who you need to make your program work in the way that you want.”

Funding physical education programs slide featuring different people to include on your team like admins, colleagues, and community organitzations.
Slide from Funding Your PE Program webinar.

Promotional Toolbox


When funding physical education programs, a promotional tool box can provide a wide range of insights and information for other stakeholders. A key component to your promotion toolbox is a well defined mission and philosophy statement. Christi shares two examples that she has taken from secondary schools missions,


  • “The mission of our health and physical education program is to empwoer students to apply skills and knowledge that contribue to a healthy lifestyle.”

  • “We are committed to developing a sequential standards based K-12 curriculum unified by four pillars of instruction: Health and Physical Literacy, Physical Fitness, Nutrition, and Social and Emotional Health.”


In building a promotional toolbox, you want to look at a few key indicators that you can showcase:


  • Standards based curriculum

  • Well designed lessons

  • Clear learning objectives

  • Meaningful student assessments


All of these components can help to make the case for PE programs in schools.

Promotional toolbox slide from funding your PE program webinar.
Slide from Funding Your PE Program webinar.

Complete A Needs Assessment


Next, it is important to create a needs assessment for your PE programs. What do you need to grow your program? This doesn’t have to be anything formal, it can even come in the form of sticky notes or a whiteboard session. But by asking questions you can begin to identify what next steps can be taken.


  • How do your needs fit the VISION for your program?

  • Are there ADDITIONAL FUNDS that can be provided from another source?


And while this can be an informal process, Christi says that even following a simple template can allow you to,


“Identify and prioritize the needs of your program to improve student performance.”


Through the template, you can begin to:

  • Evaluate strengths and weakness

  • Finds the gaps

  • Determine program needs


In addition, Christi says building out a vision board is one of her favorite strategies to defining clear goals,


“The idea of a vision board is about setting intentions and goals you want to achieve as a program. These can keep you on task and motivated to funding physical education programs.”


Needs assessment template.
Slide from Funding Your PE Program webinar.

Review Your Current Budget


It is important to know what you have to work with in your budget. In the past, many teachers might have assumed there is a lack of funding for physical education in schools.


And while that might still be the case in some places, there are a lot of different places within school districts budgets that PE programs can tap into. For example, beyond just a PE budget, there are other types of funding streams like curriculum budgets, technology budgets, and other places to get funding.


Christi says knowing where your budget stands is an important step to knowing what you have, what you need, and where to search for a new funding opportunity.

Vision boards from Lewiston High School physical education.
Slide from Funding Your PE Program webinar.

Key Takeaways on Funding Physical Education Programs


As more schools look to transition to a fitness education model to empower healthy kids and students, it is important to consider what type of grant programs and funding opportunities are available.


Funding physical education programs can help to add new curriculum, technology, and equipment to enhance physical education for students. Check out the full webinar and get a free one hour certificate of completion that can go to your teacher training hours.

Image of female lifter with data graph and laptop

Ready To Learn More?

Discover how PE teachers across the country are embracing Fitness and Technology to usher in a new age of Physical Education that inspires and motivates students toward positive outcomes. 



Does PLT4M have a grant template? 



Yes! Check out our grants for physical education blog post to access a free grant template. 



How many school does PLT4M partner with? 


PLT4M is proud to partner with over 1,200 schools across the country. Want to see what schools in your area are using PLT4M? Reach out to us and we would happy to connect you with a PLT4M school in your area! 


Map of schools using PLT4M across the country.

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