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Marching Band Students Are Getting P.E Credits

New improvements are giving Conifer High School marching band participants P.E credits
Throughout the season the marching band plays at Conifer football games and competes at several regional and state level competitions. This year at regionals the team placed 7th overall. Photo by Mary Evers

At Conifer High School two PE credits are required to graduate, due to a new change those can now be gained by joining Conifer’s marching band program. Marching band is an instrumental program at Conifer High School conducted by Sean Cartner and two drum majors, Lila Braun and Astusin Klate.

“By joining the marching band it is a year-long commitment. If you take a marching band, you have to take a band class next semester or else you cannot be in the marching band again,” Braun said.

A marching band is a group of instrumental musicians who perform while marching, for both entertainment and competition.

“It takes a lot of commitment and Marching Band is a crazy commitment that takes a lot of hard work and determination,” pit member C.J Dickinson said.

In marching band, you practice most days of the week, go to competitions, and play at the halftime of Conifers football games, as well as pep tunes for events and basketball games at Conifer.

“Marching band is a super competitive program and our final goal is to compete in state,” Dickinson said.

The marching band students will now earn two Physical Education (PE) credits if they are in the program year-long. 

Marching band practices are moving before school next year. This change comes about because of the introduction of the new orchestra teacher at Conifer, Laura Sarché, which moves all band classes to the morning (when Sean Cartner will be teaching at Conifer).
Photo by Aidan Boyd

“We rehearsed probably 12 or more hours a week,” assistant principal Becky Paschke said. Paschke used to be the director of the marching band at D’Evelyn Jr-Sr High School. “It’s an incredibly physical sport that is super demanding, at the beginning of each rehearsal we started with a one-mile run on the track and then we did a full hour of different conditioning,” 

Adding PE credits to the program is a way of highlighting the demanding physical work required from the team.

“Marching bands are physical, it requires discipline, it requires investment, those are three things that you’d love to see in a credit, probably all three of those are in a higher level than what you might see in your standard PE course,” athletic director Brad Horner said.

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