The student news site of Iowa City High School

The Little Hawk

The student news site of Iowa City High School

The Little Hawk

The student news site of Iowa City High School

The Little Hawk

Staff Profile

Marching Band and Show Choir to Count as P.E. Credit

Zach+Falk+%E2%80%9825+marches+during+the+2023+halftime+show
Molly Savage
Zach Falk ‘25 marches during the 2023 halftime show

Show choir and marching band now count towards P.E. credit at City High in light of many music directors across Iowa advocating for this change for a long time. 

“This change specifically came from the state legislature, and was a part of a bill that was passed,” Tyler Hagy, a City High Choir Director, said. 

Sports have historically counted as a way that students can get P.E. waivers, a way for students to be exempted from having to complete P.E. requirements. However, there are many extra curricular activities, such as marching band and show choir that have not counted as P.E. credit up until recently. 

“I don’t think people realize how physical marching band is. During the first trimester we practice everyday like a sport would. It’s also just a fun way to exercise and build teamwork,” said Poi Borchardt ‘26. 

“If nothing else, it’s important to acknowledge the physical work it takes to pull off a marching band show or show choir performance. It doesn’t seem like that to the audience but [these activities] require a lot of physical work to do them well,” Aaron Ottmar, a City Band Director, said. “We try to do high level shows in both of those areas and that does require a lot of physical work and effort to make that happen.” 

Rules regarding P.E. credits have been applied differently from district to district throughout the state of Iowa over the years.

“This law, in a way, was to help standardize [the different requirements] and allow students to substitute activities which can usually involve some significant physical activity, such as marching band and show choir in for taking the actual P.E. class,” Hagy said. 

Teachers and music directors across the state have been pushing for this change for years with the Iowa Legislature officially instituting regulations this past legislative session. 

“I think It’s nice that the state of Iowa and our school district is recognizing this too, and allowing for students to get P.E. credit and waivers,” Ottmar said. 

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Estelle Hartz, Assistant A&E Editor
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