California students would stop taking a mandatory physical fitness test under a proposal by Gov. Gavin Newsom intended to protect children from body shaming, bullying and gender identity discrimination.

State law requires California schools to give all fifth, seventh and ninth graders a test that measures everything from aerobic capacity to flexibility and upper body strength. But starting next year, schools would drop the physical education exam until at least 2023.

During a three-year suspension of the test, the California Department of Education would consult with experts in fitness, adaptive physical education, gender identity and students with disabilities regarding “the purpose and administration of the physical performance test,” according to a proposal in budget-related bill language quietly released late last week.

H.D. Palmer, spokesperson for Newsom’s Department of Finance, said the move comes after complaints from parents that the test is discriminatory to students with disabilities and to non-binary students, since it includes a Body Mass Index screening that offers only male or female options.

Palmer also pointed to studies that show BMI screenings play a role in body shaming and bullying…
The above comes from a Feb. 3 story posted on Politico.