Over the past year, the students of IHS, led by the Student Council, have been working tirelessly to incorporate music classes into GPA. After considering students’ options and examining other school districts’ policies, the Board of Education (BoE) voted in favor of implementing music into GPA, with the upper levels (Wind Ensemble, Chamber Orchestra, and Chorale) counting for Honors credit in weighted GPA. This change will be effective starting the first quarter. The BoE decided that the rigor and time commitment required of students in music classes was worthy of receiving credit in GPA, and they considered the fact that many neighboring school districts include music in GPA. This decision was a long-term process that resulted in an outcome that the BoE considers an endorsement of the value of music in students’ academics and lives.
While music will be added to GPA calculation, Physical Education (PE) classes will not be added into GPA during the 2017–18 school year. The PE Department has recently experienced a change to their curriculum and is currently working on fine-tuning and developing the new rigor of the curriculum. As students may have noticed, the PE Department is working on adding more assignments, and is placing more emphasis on students setting health goals to achieve by the end of the year. The Board found that while many other school districts include music, few of them include PE. The BoE will give the PE Department one more year to solidify its new standards, and will continue to consider the implementation of PE into GPA, possibly in the 2018–19 school year.