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“No, because it gives people the chance to exercise and be healthy. If people can choose to take it or not, they won’t. Then there could be more teens with problems of obesity.”
—Olga Herrera, 17, Hollywood HS

“No, because we’re at school for about eight hours each day and all we do is sit. We need a place to get rid of all that extra energy.”
—Carlos Lainez, 17, Hollywood HS

“No, because it’s cool to have P.E. class. You get to run around and hang with your friends. Without it, you can get lazy. P.E. class gets you going.”
—Daisy Solis, 16, Hollywood HS

“Yes, we should be able to choose. Most kids don’t have the ability to run and do sports well. Some kids have asthma or other medical problems and can’t do it. So they should have P.E. as an elective.”
—Andy Gyulasarian, 17, Hollywood HS

“It’s good to have P.E. class. It’s good for your health to exercise at least 30 minutes each day. My doctor told me that. Otherwise, people can gain weight or get diabetes later on in life.”
—Susan Perez, 18, Hollywood HS

“I think it should be an elective. If it’s not, then there should be options in P.E. class with lots of different activities and a big budget.”
—Lucy Martinez, 17, Hollywood HS

“P.E. should be optional. Some people don’t like the sports they have to do in class. Personally, I think P.E. class is a big hassle with all the changing, sweating and then changing back to your regular clothes.”
—Ulises Gonzalez, 15, Hollywood HS

“I think it should be optional. People should have a choice. At our school, we have to swim. I hate it. You smell like chlorine all day—it smells so bad!”
—Danny Gutierrez, 15, Hollywood HS

“It should be optional. Some people don’t like to work out, while others do. Some can’t because of their weight or other problems. It’s not fair.”
—Ebony Coleman, 17, USC MAST HS

“P.E. class is a waste of time. There are people who do what the teachers say and still get low grades in the class. Then people, like the star of the football team, don’t do much during regular P.E. class and get higher grades. So I think P.E. class should be optional.”
—Alberto Serrano, 16, USC MAST HS

“What if you don’t want to take it in ninth or tenth grade? Then you should be able to take it in tenth or eleventh grades. What if you mess up in P.E. class and it messes with your GPA? You will have to take it during summer school. It’s not worth all that. It should be optional.”
—Shawn West, 17, USC MAST HS

“Unless people are involved in sports, they can easily gain weight. So I think P.E. class should be mandatory for even longer than two years. Education shouldn’t just be about academics, but other things, too, like P.E. class.”
—Nick Harrington, 16, USC MAST HS

“It should be mandatory for all four years. We had P.E. all through middle school, but once high school came, we all got involved in other things and don’t exercise. You need a time to run around and get all the anger out.”
—Maya Levine, 17, USC MAST HS

“Not everyone is athletic. And if you take P.E. and don’t do well, it will mess up your GPA. But if you take an elective, then you can decide when to do it and make it worthwhile. Like taking a college course. So P.E. should be optional in high school.”
—Darrell Ballard Jr., 17, USC MAST HS

“It should be required for the first two years of high school. I like it. A lot of students in high school eat junk food and many are obese. So this helps them a lot. Plus, P.E. class gives you energy for the rest of the day. It gives you a lift. But I think that P.E. should be optional for the final two years of high school.”
—Yesenia Hernandez, 16, USC MAST HS

“Yes, it should be optional, because I don’t like running. They make us run for 45 minutes and it’s so hard. I turn really purple when I run, so I think it should be optional.”
—Jaymie Zelaya, 17, Hollywood HS