More high school students involved in extra-curricular activities will be required to get a medical physical from a doctor in order to participate. The University Interscholastic League (UIL) will now require students performing with the school’s marching band to also get a physical.
Students participating in athletic competitions have been required to get a physical for decades. Recent incidents of students collapsing during band practices or while performing during competitions and games has caused the UIL to impose the requirement on students in the band as well. The rule will act as a preventive measure for students with high risks like heart issues or other illnesses that might affect them while marching.
Jose Ochoa is the director for the marching band at Little Cypress-Mauriceville High School. Ochoa informed that LC-M already requires its band members to get physicals for several years. “UIL is just trying to ensure the safety of the marching arts since we do a lot of things that are physical now, so before they step foot on the marching field students with any health issues we can prevent them from doing anything physical,” Ochoa explained.
Other schools will now have to follow through and have their members of the band get physicals. A check of other Orange County school districts found that most are already in compliance. Kevin Crater the band director at Orangefield High School said they have required physicals for band members in the five years he has been at Orangefield. Tommy Gladney has directed the band at West Orange-Stark the last four years, and he implemented the same requirement when taking over the program.
-Dan Perrine, KOGT-