OPHS Physical Education Requirement


    Oak Park Unified School District requires all students to earn 20 credits of Physical Education toward graduation from high school. Furthermore, all 9th-grade students are required to enroll in PE unless they are engaged in regular school-sponsored interscholastic athletic programs (CA EC 51242), and are to take the California State Physical Fitness Test (CPFT).  Students with special needs will receive an accommodated PE program per physician’s recommendation.


    All ninth-grade students are required to take the CPFT at Oak Park High School. The six tests include; the mile run, curl-ups (sit-ups), push-ups, body composition, sit and reach (flexibility), and trunk extensor (strength and flexibility). For 9th-grade students enrolled in PE these tests are administered in PE classes.  For 9th-grade students earning PE credit for participation in interscholastic athletic activities or Independent Study PE, the tests are administered in 7th period in the Spring. 


    Students who participate in school-sponsored interscholastic athletic programs may be granted PE credit for all or part of their physical education requirement.  Students may earn credit for one semester of physical education by successfully completing one season of sport or one semester of the program.  Students successfully completing a full season of athletics will earn five physical education credits for their participation in each season of sport or semester of the program during grades 9-12 up to a maximum of 20 credits. A full season is the ability to participate physically in over 50% of the practices and games. Students who become ineligible and/or injured for a portion of the season may jeopardize their ability to receive credit.  This credit will be recorded automatically on the student’s transcript when the Athletic Department verifies the completion of the sports season.  NO GRADES WILL BE ENTERED; only the credit will be shown. 

    For ninth-grade students, only fall sports will count for fall PE credit; winter and spring sports will count as second-semester credit only. 9th-grade students not participating in a fall sport are required to take a fall PE class. 9th-grade students not participating in a winter or spring sport are required to take a spring PE class.

    Twenty credits of Physical Education are required for graduation. However, students may earn PE credit based on participation in an interscholastic athletic program.  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 freshman year.   Sports classes such as baseball, basketball, and football count towards the 20 credit PE requirement. The credits earned in these classes in 9th grade will count towards the 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 can earn Physical Education credits through participation in the following classes/sports:

    • Court Sports class*
    • Team Sports/Weight Training*
    • Tennis class
    • Walking for Exercise class
    • Ultimate Sports
    • Any OPHS Interscholastic Sport
    • Marching Band
    • Color Guard
    • Drumline
    • Dance Team
    • Cheer Team
    • Stunt Squad
    • Independent Study PE 

    *Classes offered through Spring 2020. Revised courses coming in Fall 2020.

    DANCE, CHEER, STUNT TEAMS, MARCHING BAND, DRUMLINE AND COLOR GUARD Students who make the cheerleading, stunt squads, dance team, marching band, color guard or drumline may earn PE credits toward the Physical Education requirement.

    print  Print the Retroactive Athletic PE Credit Application


    Under certain conditions, Independent Study Physical Education may be granted to students who are 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 earn PE credits. 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 in Academy, club, and travel youth sports teams usually do not qualify for Independent Study Physical Education.

     The Independent Study PE application & procedures may be printed by clicking on the document below:

    ISPE 2024/25 Deadline May 10


    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.  


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Last Modified on March 15, 2024