The Millard Public Schools in Omaha, Neb., will not allow its students to substitute marching band for its requirement that students take three semesters of physical education.
The proposal would save about $75,000 a year, according to the administration. But, the administration also said if the proposal was implemented it would negate the district’s emphasis on wellness and promoting physical fitness.
There are two issues here.
First, as almost everyone who ever was a member of a marching band knows, it’s physically challenging. Every member must not only march, sometimes at a rapid pace, but also read music, do maneuvers and play an instrument at the same time.
Some parades are a mile; the Rose Parade is 5.5 miles. Students train not just to march, but to march the entire distance.
For majorettes, it means marching, throwing and catching batons, a feat not many can do if they are not physically fit.
Waiving PE credit is reasonable.