OPHS Physical Education Requirement

  • Twenty credits of Physical Education are required for graduation. However, students may be exempt for one or more semesters of 9th grade PE based on participation in an interscholastic athletic program.  Ninth-grade students who are participating in an OPHS interscholastic athletic program may be exempted from taking PE during the semester their program takes place.  (Exempt means that freshmen do not have to take a PE I class during the semester when they are participating in the interscholastic athletic program. However, they do not earn PE credit for their athletic participation in 9th grade). This includes participation in the following programs:  Football, Tennis, Volleyball, X-Country, Golf, Basketball, Soccer, Baseball, Track & Field, Softball, and Lacrosse, Stunt, Cheerleading, Marching Band, Color Guard, and Dance Team.  If you are not planning to participate in one of these programs in the 9th grade you must take the PE I class during your freshmen year.  Students who continue to participate athletic programs in grades 10-12 may earn the 20 credits of PE through their participation. Sports classes such baseball, basketball, and football when taken in 9th grade do not count towards the 20 credit PE requirement. The credits earned in these classes in 9th grade will count towards the elective credit requirement.

    Students who do not participate in an interscholastic athletic program in 9th grade will be required to take 10 credits of 9th grade PE.

    Also, students in grades 10-12 can earn Physical Education credits through participation in the following classes:

    • Court Sports class
    • Team Sports/Weight Training
    • Tennis class
    • Walking for Exercise class
    • Ultimate Field Sports

    Students in grades 10-12 who have passed 5 of the 6 CPFTs can earn Physical Education credits by taking the following:

    • Any OPHS Interscholastic Sport
    • Marching Band
    • Color Guard
    • Dance Team
    • Cheer Team
    • Independent Study PE


    All 9th-grade students are required to take the California State Physical Fitness Test (CPFT).  The 6 tests include the mile run, sit-ups, push-ups, body composition, sit and reach and trunk extensor.  Upon passing 5 out of the 6 CPFTs, students may elect to satisfy the PE requirement in a number of ways.  Students who fail to pass 5 of the 6 CPFT, may not use athletic participation to satisfy the 20 credit requirement.  Students who do not pass 5 of the 6 tests in the 9th grade will be enrolled in a PE class in 10th grade even if they passed the PE 1 class and have been selected for an OPHS Sports team.  Students who have not passed the CPFT may play sports but will not earn PE credit until they have passed the CPFT. These tests are administered in all PE1 classes.  Additional testing information can be found at:  http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/pf/

    What if I am participating in a Fall athletic program (Football, girls Tennis, girls Volleyball, X-Country, girls Golf, marching band, color guard)?A fall athlete may be exempted from the fall semester of PE.  They will, however, be enrolled in the spring semester of PE.

    What if I am participating in a Spring athletic program (Baseball, boys Tennis, Track & Field, Softball, boys Lacrosse, girls Lacrosse, Stunt)?  A spring athlete may be exempted from the spring semester of PE.  They will, however, be enrolled in the fall semester of PE.

    What if I am a 1-sport winter athlete (boys Basketball, girls Basketball, boys Soccer, girls Soccer)? A winter athlete may be exempted from the fall or spring semester of PE.  But if he or she in not enrolled in a fall PE Class they will be enrolled in PE during the spring semester.

    What if I participate 2 interscholastic athletic activities in the 9th grade?9th graders participating in 2 interscholastic athletic activities will be exempted from taking PE.  It is important to note that although you are not required to select a 9th grade PE class, you must still take and pass the CPFT.  Additionally, if you do not make a team, or change your mind and don’t end up trying out for the team, OPHS has the right to drop the elective you selected and put you back in 9th grade PE.

    What if I participate in Cheer or Dance Team (both yearlong activities)?9th graders participating on the Cheer or Dance Team can be exempted from both semesters of PE in the 9th grade.  Both Cheer and Dance Team will earn 10 credits of PE/year (for a maximum of 20 credits) beginning in the 10th grade.  Students must take and pass the CPFT in 9th grade in order to earn PE credits.


                         9th Grade

    10th Grade

    11th Grade

    12th Grade


    Credits earned:


    Semester 1:

    Semester 2:




    1 Inter-scholastic

    Athletic Activity during first semester

    Request a 1 semester elective in place of PE

    Take Spring Semester PE I (earn 5 PE credits)

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits


    1 Athletic participation  (Winter season)

    Request a 1 semester elective in place of PE

    Take Spring Semester

    PE I (earn 5 PE credits)

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits


    1 Interscholastic Athletic Activity during 2nd semester

    Take PE I (earn 5 PE credits)

    Request a 1 semester elective in place of PE

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits

    Continue with interscholastic athletic activity-earn (5) PE credits


    2 Interscholastic Athletic Activities

     (Fall, Winter or Spring) Request 2 one-semester electives, or 1 yearlong elective in place of PE

    Continue with Interscholastic Athletic Activity

    Continue with 2 interscholastic athletic activities- earn (10) PE credits

    Continue with 2 interscholastic athletic activities- earn (10) PE credits




    Anyone successfully completing a full season of a sport in grades 10-12 will earn (5) units of physical education credit for their participation in each season of the sport during grades 10-12 up to a maximum of 10 credits. A full season is the ability to participate physically in over 50% of the practices and games. An athlete who is injured for over 50% of the season will not earn credit.
    Students with temporary medical conditions are expected to participate in PE to the extent that their condition permits. Students with medical conditions are entitled to an instructional program based on grade-level or course-level standards. The program for those students is designed to address the same standards as that for students without medical conditions. When possible, students with medical conditions engage in the same instructional unit and content area.

    An instructional plan for a student with a short-term medical condition assigns physical education tasks and physical activities that the student can do in the short-term and gradually, as the medical condition allows, moves the student toward full participation.

    Physical education teachers work with the student’s doctor and other health care providers to design a program for the student. Teachers also communicate with the student’s parents or guardians to fully understand what the student can and cannot do. Effective communication between the parents, teachers, and other professionals ensures that a student receives physical education instruction that meets his or her unique needs.

    Short Term (1 day-3 weeks): If a student is to be medically excused from all active participation in Physical Education for a short period of time the following procedure will be implemented:

    • The student should dress for class every day even when medically excused from an activity.
    • The student must bring a note from a parent requesting limited/no activity due to injury/illness. The note cannot exceed three class meetings.
    • If a student needs to be excused for four or more days, a note from a doctor is needed indicating the length of time to be excused and the type of physical activities that the student can engage in, e.g. running, walking, lower or upper body only.
    • If a student becomes injured or ill during the day before his/her P.E. class (doesn’t apply to periods 1 or 2), a phone message that day will excuse the student’s inactivity.
    • In any of the above three medical situations, the student should dress and participate in limited activity, according to the doctor’s instructions. If the student is unable to do any form of physical activity, he/she may do a written assignment given by the teacher. The assignment is to be worked on during class time and checked by the teacher at the end of the class period. The assignment must be appropriately completed in order for the student to receive credit each day of his/her medical excuse.
    Long Term (3 weeks or more): If a student is to be medically excused from all physical education for a period of 3 weeks or more, the student shall not receive physical education credits, but an attempt will be made to place him/her in another class for credit.
    A student who enters OPHS after the 9th-grade year is still subject to the 20-credit PE graduation requirement. Counselors will evaluate the student’s transcript to determine what, if, any, PE credit will be awarded for courses taken or sports participation in the student’s prior high school, and to determine how the remainder of the requirement may be satisfied. Exceptions or special circumstances will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and require the Principal’s approval.
    In order to participate in an activity or athletic event, students shall be present in all scheduled classes on the date of said event. A tardy of 15 minutes or more shall be considered an absence.
    Note: This requirement pertains to all OPUSD students participating in OPHS activities. 

    Any athlete in season in a regular physical education class is expected to do the same activities as the rest of the class. An athlete who is medically excused from participating in a P.E. class will not be allowed to practice and/or play in a game that same day. An athlete who becomes injured may, schedule permitting, add PE for the remainder of the semester to earn PE credit with a doctor’s note that specifies what activities he/she is able to perform. 
    Under certain conditions, independent study physical education may be granted to an athlete in grades 10-12 who is involved in a competitive level professional or pre-professional program. Since these programs are non-accredited there are specific guidelines that Oak Park School Board policy has established with regards to liability insurance and "hold harmless" agreements.  Additionally, students are not given a grade for these classes but will have the opportunity to have one or more semesters of PE waived. Students must apply for this prior to May 30th of the previous school year to be able to request independent study PE for the Fall semester. Participation on Academy, club, and travel youth sports teams usually do not qualify for Independent Study Physical Education. Independent Study PE is only available to grade 10-12 students who have satisfied the CPFT requirement in 9th grade.
     The Independent Study PE application & procedures may be printed by clicking on the hyperlinks below:

    print Print the Independent Study Procedures & Application



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Last Modified on April 3, 2019