Across Canada – Ontario

Provincial Organization
Ontario Physical and Health Education Association

View the current Ontario  PE/HE Curriculum

Health and Physical Education Curriculum focus within the context of a Healthy Schools approach focus

  • Active Living
  • Movement Competence
  • Healthy Living

Allocated Physical Education Time

  • Kindergarten - Grade 8: 150 minutes/week
  • Grade 9-12: 1 credit required in high school for graduation, this credit can be taken in any grade

Daily Physical Activity

  • Grade 1-8: minimum of 20 minutes/week of sustained moderate to vigorous physical activity each school day during instructional time

Estimated actual Physical Education Time

PHE Canada's QDPE standards call for a minimum of 30 minutes of daily physical education (for a total of 150 minutes per week). Actual instruction across the province varies widely from 40 minutes/week to 200 minutes/week.


1) A renewed elementary Health and Physical Education Curriculum for Ontario will be released this spring 2009.  Mandatory implementation of this policy will be required by elementary schools by fall 2010.  A renewed curriculum for secondary schools will also be released in 2010 and implemented in 2011.  If fully implemented, this policy has strong potential to positively impact health and learning outcomes for Ontario’s children and youth and to ensure that all students reach their full potential.

2) Many stakeholders share responsibility to support and enhance health and learning of Ontario’s children and youth.  Ophea believes that this policy presents a unique opportunity to mobilize multi-sectoral partnerships to ensure integrated and holistic approaches to support healthy active living for Ontario’s children and youth.  This, in turn, can impact on a number of government policies, priorities and programs in addition to the renewed Health and Physical Education Curriculum such as Safe Schools, childhood obesity, diabetes, Character Development, Roots of Violence, mental health, full day learning for 4 and 5 year olds, and poverty. 

3) Research in the areas of educational improvement and health promotion show that interventions to support student health and learning are most effective when implemented within the context of a comprehensive school health (healthy schools) approach. Foundations for a Healthy School, released by the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health Promotion in December 2006 provides a philosophy and framework for healthy schools in Ontario which can be used to address a variety of health-related issues in holistic and integrated way.  This approach has also been reflected in the Public Health Standards which were released in October 2008 which include directives for public health to support school boards and schools to address a number of health-related issues using a comprehensive school health approach.

4) Over the last 10 years, Ophea has been providing essential supports for educators to implement the Health and Physical Education curriculum including resources, training, and consultation.  A key support in this regard is the Health and Physical Education Curriculum Implementation Support Documents which provide a “one stop shop” for educators, particularly generalist teachers, to access high quality, grade/age specific support.  Recent consultation with school boards across the province indicate that a similar set of supports be developed (in English and French) to support the implementation of the renewed Health and Physical Education curriculum.  These documents will provide “base level” support for the implementation of Health and Physical Education which is a critical component of a comprehensive plan that would also include training, partnerships, and collaboration with stakeholders to support the school as the learning hub for healthy active living.

Updated: 2015