AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals “I thought that was really unfair because most people in band need that P.E. credit – and they just took it away,” Triana said. “That was just wrong.” The outcry prompted the Whittier Union High School District and 13 other districts to ask the California Department of Education to alter its policy, saying it deterred students from participating in the arts. The effort was a success. Now, state officials have agreed to allow students to get P.E. credit for marching band on one condition: that they take a regular P.E. class in the spring semester of their freshman year in place of the marching band class. “We appreciate the willingness of the CDE to review this matter,” said Superintendent Sandra Thorstenson. “This decision benefits not just our band members, but students throughout the state.” Local band directors had feared that students’ schedules would be too jam-packed if they had to take P.E. classes on top of band class and the extra rehearsals. WHITTIER – A compromise with state education officials means Whittier-area high school students once again will be able to participate in marching band and have it also count toward physical education credits for graduation. Earlier this year, controversy was sparked when state officials conducting a compliance review at La Serna High ordered administrators to stop giving P.E. credit to marching band students. They claimed the band and regiment program did not meet the state’s requirements for physical education – specifically, that it doesn’t prepare students for annual physical fitness testing and is not taught by a teacher credentialed in physical education. As such, many juniors and seniors in the band were forced to scuttle summer plans to take an extra P.E. class – such as Pioneer High School drum major Angela Triana, 17. Plus, said Pioneer High Band Director Craig McKenzie, having the class count toward P.E. credits was always an added bonus of being in the band. “When we couldn’t say that this year, we definitely had lower numbers and less interest,” McKenzie said. “You ask for all this extra time and effort and then they don’t get a P.E. credit for it? “It looked like we were asking too much, and for too many students, they decided they just weren’t going to be in the band,” he said. Although the policy change came too late for her, Triana said she felt it was a “good compromise – and seeing as how we just started the year, I don’t think many freshmen know about it yet. “I guess for some people who use the band not to get into P.E., it will backfire on them,” Triana said. “But I guess this is a pretty fair deal.” [email protected] (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3051160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!