Illinois passes bill to make recess mandatory at public schools

National

Unused playground equipment sits outside of Burr Elementary School on January 25, 2021 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — Recess could soon be mandatory at public schools across Illinois.

A bill requiring 30 minutes per day of supervised unstructured recess for schools is now heading to Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s desk.

The 30 minutes of recess can be split into two 15-minute periods if a school district so chooses. The bill would also make it so that a student can’t be removed from recess as a punishment.

The bill passed 60-52, with six “no” votes. Republicans voted against it because of concerns about what it could do to a school’s already structured day. They also brought up complaints from local school districts that said the financial impact of hiring a recess supervisor would cause issues for schools.

If Pritzker signs the bill, the requirement will start during the next school year.

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