Today’s blog posting will focus on the role of interscholastic athletics in my perfect school. Interscholastic athletics are varsity sports played between different schools. This is another area where additionally input and comments from the readership of my blog would be beneficial to me.
An athletics at my program would be handled in one of several ways. I will preview them here for your thoughts My first would be to have absolutely no athletics program. The other option would be to have only a varsity program for the available sports which would be funded outside of school tuition.
As a two sport, six time varsity letterer, I understand the place of athletics in school. I also know there are plenty of opportunities for students to participate in sports outside of school. Why should the school fund the athletic abilities of students for only their benefit. A key aspect of any athletic program in my school would for it to be self-sustaining. I do not want money spent by parents and other to be used on anything but anything that does not directly associate with academics and student learning.
The first options would be to have no athletic program. As I have stated before there are plenty of opportunities for students to participate in these activities without taking away from their educational experience. As a teacher I now fully understand the numerous disruptions cause the learning environment created in the school. I know that many athletes are the the better performing students in the school, so there is less of a problem with failing academics for most athletes.
It sends a bad message to kids when we take time out of our day consistently to praise the skills of a specific class of students, i.e. pep rallies. Also, they are allowed to miss classes for these competitions. Which sets them apart from other students. Because of their involvement in a specific volunteer activity they are allowed to skip out of classes or school. This sends a message I don’t want to make at my school.
Also, I would take an idea in a previous post on house or class competitions and expand it here. Those athletically inclined students could participate the intramural athletic events throughout the year for their house or class. These intramural activities would be gender neutral, both boys and girls would be allowed to participate on the same teams.
There are several items I would want to make sure our program if we decided to have a sports program First, the school would only have a varsity sports program. I see the need for a possible sports program, but to have three teams that are nothing more than a practice squad and which have no bearing on state competitions is pointless. A coach can add people on to his squad as part of the practice squad which he can draw upon to use in games, if necessary
Secondly, the student athletes grades need to be the best in the school. I would require that a student maintain a C or even as high as a B average in all of their classes. Each athlete would be responsible for getting weekly grade checks from their teachers. If they fall below in any of the classes they are to use the next week to pull up their grades. They would be excluded from practice to ensure this happens. If a athlete forgets to get it completed they are disqualified from any practices of games until they have them completed. If that means they miss the bus for Friday’s game, then so be it. It teaches them responsibility.
Thirdly, the funding of the athletics program would be outside of the school’s traditional budget. If students and parents really wanted the program, I would place the responsibility upon them to secure funding for that sport. This would be done through a team or school athletic boosters club. I will not have a single dollar given in education go towards any other program.
Fourth, any competition times would have to be arranged so students are not taken out of athletic classes unless ABSOLUTELY necessary.
I would like comments from all the readers about what you think of my athletic program ideas. Please comment early and often. Thanks and have a great day.