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Physical Education COPA


About COPA

The Creating Opportunities for Physical Activity (COPA) Program is possible through a partnership with Providence Little Company of Mary. COPA assists teachers and faculty to be independent leaders in physical education. Physical education specialists train classroom teachers in elementary school settings to become independent in physical education instruction.

All our schools provide students the opportunity to be active and healthy before, during, and after school. Every day we coach, guide, and inspire children, parents, teachers, and school staff to create a culture of daily physical activity and healthy eating, because everyone should live and learn in a healthy environment. 

Creating Opportunities for Physical Activity (COPA) provides the following services:

  • Peer-coach training for teachers. COPA uses a peer coach model to teach elementary classroom teachers how to provide Physical Education using a Providence designed and standards-based Physical Education curriculum.
  • Increase Physical Activity Opportunities. Through trainings for before and afterschool staff, trainings for recess staff, special events such as Cardio-Carnivals and Jog-a-thons, and in-class activities such as Instant Recess, COPA provides children with numerous opportunities to be active throughout the day.
  • Family activities to promote parents as role models for healthy behavior. COPA provides exercise classes, health education and special family nights that teach easy, low cost ways to be healthy.
  • Healthy Eating. COPA promotes healthy eating through various nutrition campaigns, lessons, and the introduction of salad bars as part of the school lunch.

COPA also assists schools with special events, Instant Recess, healthy fundraisers, and professional development to increase the culture of daily physical activity. 

Program Structure

To ensure all TK- 5th grade students are receiving 100 minutes of physical education per week, and allow collaboration time for classroom teachers to meet with their grade level team: 

  • 50 minutes led by the PE team allowing teacher collaboration time 

  • 25 minutes led by the classroom teacher with PE teacher and Providence COPA Support                                      

  • 25 minutes led by the classroom teacher independently


Consists of quality standards-based lesson plans that focus on:

  • Sports and skill development
  • Cooperative learning
  • Fitness-based activities
  • Social skills development


  • Kids are enjoying being active

  • Classroom teachers are developing confidence in facilitating physical education in a different environment

  • Boosts academic learning

  • Increases personal fitness and motor skill development

  • Strengthens relationships with others

  • Helps reduce stress and anxiety

  • Provides an outlet for creativity and self expression

  • Builds self-confidence


Physical Education Specialists

Latarrin Sheppard, Physical Education Specialist

Latarrin Sheppard

Physical Education Instructors

Erik Almeida

Monica Carter


Billy Mitchell Elementary School

Room 15

(310) 676-1197 x 55215

For more information about COPA,

Please contact

Jim Tehan

Director, Community Health

Providence Little Company of Mary


During the School Day

COPA is a peer-coach training program for elementary school teachers.  A physical education Specialist from Providence Little Company of Mary is paired with a teacher for two years to bring California standard-based physical education to their students.

After School

COPA uses the C.A.R.E. (Challenge, Assess, Respect, and Exercise) curriculum to reinforce physical activity instruction the children learn during the school day.   This eight week curriculum combines physical, social, and emotional aspects of the health taught through indoor and outdoor activities. 

COPA Resources

COPA Teacher Resource Site

Physical Education Log (PDF)

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