FACT CHECK: Was The PACER Test Banned For ‘Child Cruelty’?

Hannah Hudnall | Fact Check Reporter

A post shared on Facebook claims the FitnessGram PACER Test has been banned in schools for child cruelty.

Verdict: False

The claim originated from what appears to be a satirical article. There is no evidence the PACER Test was banned for “child cruelty” in any school district.

Fact Check:

The FitnessGram PACER Test is a “multistage aerobic capacity test” intended to measure the aerobic capacity of students, according to the Cooper Institute, which created the test. Those participating in the test run back and forth while being guided by a series of beeping sounds that get progressively faster, the institute reports.

The Facebook post appears to show a screen grab of a news article with a headline that reads, “Pacer Test banned for child cruelty.” The image includes text that jokingly states, “I want compensation for my suffering.”

The article featured in the screen grab appears to be satirical. A keyword search found it was published in February 2016 by the “Neomongolia News Network.” The website’s “About us” page states “Neomongolia News Network was founded by some old man in 1956, following this, it became the main news source of the nation’s people. I was paid 3,000 dollars to write this give me my money.”

There are no news reports covering or reporting on an alleged ban of the PACER Test. The alleged ban is neither mentioned on the Cooper Institute’s Fitnessgram website nor the institute’s main website. (RELATED: Have These Four States Banned NFL Games?)

Some school districts have posted videos and photos of students running the test, suggesting the program is still being used. One Twitter post from Dailey Middle School in Austin, Texas on April 6 shows students participating in the test.

Check Your Fact has reached out to the Cooper Institute for comment and will update this piece if a response is given.

Hannah Hudnall

Fact Check Reporter

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