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WASHINGTON - Reading, writing, 'rithmetic -- and phys ed?

The Institute of Medicine is recommending that schools provide opportunities for at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day for students, and that P.E. be designated a core subject.

The report says only about half of the nation's youngsters are getting at least an hour of vigorous or moderate physical activity every day.

It says another concern is that 44 percent of school administrators report slashing big chunks of time from physical education, arts and recess since the passage of the No Child Left Behind law in 2001. They've been trying to boost classroom time for reading and math.

With childhood obesity on the rise, and kids spending more of the day in the classroom, the head of the panel that wrote the report says schools are the best place to help shape up the nation's children.

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