By Mike DeNardo

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — A bill moving through the legislature in Trenton would require New Jersey schools to have recess.

The bill would require that students in kindergarten through fifth grade have a daily, 20-minute recess period. That’s time that would not count toward schools’ mandate of 150 minutes of weekly physical education.

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JoAnn Doherty, past president of the New Jersey Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, says recess has health and academic benefits.

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“I taught for 44 years in the state of New Jersey,” Doherty said. “And I have worked with kindergarten kids. And I can tell you that they can’t stay in a classroom without some kind of a break.”

But some educators warn that mandating recess will mean less time for something else in the school day.

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The Senate-passed bill has cleared the Assembly Education Committee. The full Assembly could consider the measure in December.