PCP: Requirement of health class

Varying views on graduation requirements
PCP: Requirement of health class
Health credit should be required for graduation

Every year, Park sophomores are required to take a health course to earn a credit necessary for graduation. This course covers things like disease/illness, nutrition, reproduction and fitness. 

This course is very important for high school students to take. It’s a unique course that teaches students about their health and lives which is very relevant. It’s different from other courses in the way that you are learning life skills and how to be the best and healthiest version of yourself. It’s a breath of fresh air from a student’s regular course load of things like math and social studies and it teaches things that you would not get from taking only your regular classes.

It’s very important for students to learn the things that health class teaches you. For me, the most valuable unit was the CPR unit. We were all given rubber dummies and we practiced giving CPR on them. This is such an important skill that could potentially save someone’s life. I know people around me that have had to give CPR in situations and it ended up being vital to the person’s life. In addition, this health course at school is free to take and it can be expensive to take a CPR certification course if you need it for a job. 

This course is also important for students to take because they may not get the information elsewhere, or they may be misinformed. Health class encourages students to live a safe and healthy lifestyle and gives them ways to support that lifestyle. Especially with the rise of social media, there is a lot of misinformation circulating that can be detrimental to student’s wellbeing if they don’t know better. This class also helps students make informed choices about their health and having the knowledge to make these choices can be so important in the future. 

In my experience, health class was also pretty easy. Before taking the class I worried that it might be a lot of work and take time away from the other classes I was taking but that was not the case. The coursework is detailed but not super advanced or hard and as long as you showed up to class to get the information, the assignments were straightforward. The teachers were very helpful and wanted you to succeed and the information I learned from them was important.

In conclusion, I think that a health class should be required for graduation. The course has a lot of important material that is relevant to students and important for their futures.

Health credit should not be required for graduation

As sophomores at Park, every student is required to take a semester-long health class to earn a credit needed for graduation. Although it’s no question that the class covers important things such as CPR training, nutrition, addiction and reproduction, I don’t believe it should be required to graduate.

It is an important class for students to take, however, in reality, most of the content covered in that class are things that an average high schooler will already know. At Park, we’ve been studying things like drug addiction and nutrition since elementary school, and when I took the class, it felt repetitive and unnecessary. Also, sexual health and reproduction takes up such a small portion of the curriculum that it feels like we just brush over it, when it should be the most important part of a high school health class.

Additionally, my health class sophomore year was so easy that it felt like busy work. After finishing the class, I felt that my time had been wasted. For me, the most valuable unit was the CPR unit, where we practiced on dummies and learned how to save people who needed help. This skill is incredibly valuable and is why I believe taking a health class should be encouraged. However, most of the other units were spent filling out notes about drugs and diets — things that are mostly common sense.

I believe that although the class teaches us useful skills and information, it should be an optional course to take. While some students may feel like they do need to take a health class, others definitely don’t. At Park, other important classes like Personal Finance — which are required at other schools — are optional. Learning how to handle your money in the real world is an incredibly valuable skill, but taking that class is still not required to graduate, so health shouldn’t be either.

Taking health teaches students how to live a healthy life. It teaches about the dangers of drugs and the importance of taking care of your body. However, the students that this information is targeted at are not going to take it to heart. If they want to make a change, they will, and if they don’t, the class isn’t going to change their mind.

Overall, I believe health should not be required for graduation. I think it’s an important class that should be highly encouraged to take, but a lot of information covered in the class is already common knowledge. 

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