POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) — The state Board of Education has agreed to allow a series of public hearings on making physical education credits mandatory for high school students. The board approved the idea on a 4-3 vote after initially rejecting a plan to mandate two credits of physical education for graduation.

Trustees say they prefer letting individual school districts setting physical education requirements. They also expressed concerns about the impact on small, rural districts. The plan for adding physical education requirements has the backing of the Idaho Department of Education and would take effect in 2019.

The Idaho Statesman reports the idea also supported by the American Heart Association and the Idaho Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. Supporters see it as a tool in the battle against obesity.