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Boys Varsity Basketball vs. ELEANOR ROOSEVELT HIGH
Win - Score: 39-36
Boys Varsity Basketball vs. SHERWOOD HIGH
Win - Score: 71-62
Boys Varsity Basketball vs. WINSTON CHURCHILL HIGH
Win - Score: 54-39
Boys Varsity Basketball vs. THOMAS S. WOOTTON HIGH
Win - Score: 82-40
Boys Varsity Basketball vs. QUINCE ORCHARD HIGH
Win - Score: 61-39
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Girls Varsity Basketball vs. WALT WHITMAN HIGH
Loss - Score: 49-62
Boys Varsity Basketball vs. WINSTON CHURCHILL HIGH
Win - Score: 65-39
Girls Varsity Basketball vs. WINSTON CHURCHILL HIGH
Loss - Score: 23-59
Boys Varsity Basketball vs. SHERWOOD HIGH
Win - Score: 66-53
Girls Varsity Basketball vs. SHERWOOD HIGH
Loss - Score: 34-45
Announcements and Important Events

The Case for High School Activities

Date Posted: Monday Sep 22, 2008

The Case for High School Activities
The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and its membership
believe that interscholastic sports and fine arts activities promote citizenship and
sportsmanship. They instill a sense of pride in community, teach lifelong lessons of teamwork
and self-discipline and facilitate the physical and emotional development of our nation’s
Unfortunately, there appears to be a creeping indifference toward support for high school
activity programs by the general public. This neglect undermines the educational mission of
our schools and the potential prosperity of our communities.
There is no better time than today to assert "The Case for High School Activities." Education
and community leaders across the nation must be made aware of the facts contained in this
material. From interscholastic sports to music, drama and debate, activities enrich a student's
high school experience, and the programs must be kept alive.
At a cost of only one to three percent (or less in many
cases) of an overall school's budget, high school activity
programs are one of the best bargains around. It is in
these vital programs – sports, music, speech, drama,
debate – where young people learn lifelong lessons as
that compliment the academic lessons taught in the
The NFHS supports cocurricular
endeavors through
many avenues, including:
?? Rules Writing Process- The
NFHS produces more than eight million
copies of publications and support materials annually for 15 rules
books covering 17 sports. The NFHS publishes case books, officials’
manuals, hand books, and simplified and illustrated books in many
?? The NFHS Coaches Education Program- The NFHS Fundamentals of
Coaching Course provides a unique student-centered curriculum for
interscholastic coaches that assists coaches in creating a healthy and age appropriate
sport experience. The course can be taken either online or in a face to face blended
delivery option.
?? National High School Activities Week – The nation's high schools are encouraged to
promote the values inherent in high school athletics, speech, music, drama, debate,
and spirit squads during this week-long celebration in the third week in October.
?? Public Service Announcements: Various sportsmanship messages are created and
distributed in electronic and radio formats. In addition, healthy lifestyle messages
that tackle difficult but current topics such as steroid usage, and hazing education.
?? High School Activities: A Community Investment in America – This presentation is a
NFHS educational product. It documents the value of high school athletic and activity
programs through an excellent PowerPoint presentation with videos on a CD-ROM.
You can order this CD-ROM by calling NFHS customer service at 800-776-3462.
Benefits of Co-curricular Activities
?? Activities Support the Academic Mission of Schools. They are not a diversion but
rather an extension of a good educational program. Students who participate in
activity programs tend to have higher grade-point averages, better attendance
records, lower dropout rates and fewer discipline problems than students generally.
?? Activities are Inherently Educational. Activity programs provide valuable lessons
for practical situations – teamwork, sportsmanship, winning and losing, and hard
work. Through participation in activity programs, students learn self-discipline, build
self-confidence and develop skills to handle competitive situations. These are qualities
the public expects schools to produce in students so that they become responsible
adults and productive citizens.
?? Activities Foster Success in Later Life. Participation in high school activities is
often a predictor of later success – in college, a career and becoming a contributing
member of society.
Following are some of those benefits, with case studies, where
applicable, listed to document the benefits (while many of the studies
refer to extracurricular activities, the NFHS prefers the use of the term
co-curricular activities, believing that activities support the academic
mission of schools and are inherently educational).
Participation in high school activities is a valuable part of the overall
high school experience.
?? Students who spend no time in extracurricular activities are 49% more likely to use drugs
and 37% more likely to become teen parents than those who spend one to four hours per
week in extracurricular activities (United States Department of Education. No Child Left
Behind: The facts about 21st Century Learning. Washington, DC: 2002.)
?? In their 2006 report, Effects of Title IX and Sports Participation on Girls’ Physical
Activity and Weight, Professors Kaestner and Xu of the University of Illinois at Chicago,
found that the dramatic increase in sports participation among girls in the aftermath of the
passage of Title IX was associated with an increase in physical activity and an
improvement in weight and body mass among adolescent girls. They conclude that their
results strongly suggest that Title IX and the increase in athletic opportunities among
adolescent females it engendered had a beneficial effect on the health of adolescent girls.
?? A Harvard Educational Review article in 2002 found that participation in
extracurricular activities in high school appears to be one of the few interventions
that benefit low-status, disadvantaged students – those less well served by traditional
educational programs – as much or more than their more advantaged peers.
?? In telephone interviews of a national sample of teens in 2001, more than half (54%) said
the wouldn’t watch so much TV or play video games if they had other things to do after
school. The same survey found that more than half of teens wish there were more
community or neighborhood-based programs available after school, and two- thirds of
those surveyed said they would participate in such programs if they were available.
?? Bonnie Barber and her colleagues, contributors to the 2005 book, Organized
Activities as Developmental Contexts for Children and Adolescents, concluded that
making diverse clubs and activities available to a wide range of students is important.
The opportunity to embed one’s identity in multiple extracurricular contexts and to
experience multiple competencies facilitates attachment to school and adjustment.
Activity participation is also linked to affiliation with peers who are academically
focused. Adolescents can benefit from this synergistic system when they have
opportunities to participate in diverse activities.
Students who compete in high school activity programs
make higher grades and have better attendance.
?? According to the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, students
who participate in the arts nine hours or more each week for at least a year are four
times more likely to: be recognized for academic achievement, win a school
attendance award, participate in a science and math fairand win an award for writing.
They are also three times more likely to be elected to class office.
?? A Minnesota State High School League survey of 300 Minnesota high schools showed
that the average GPA of a student-athlete was 2.84, compared with 2.68 for the average
student, and that student-athletes missed an average of only 7.4 days of school each year,
compared with 8.8 for the average student. (Trevor Born. High Standard for GPA, in
Minneapolis Star Tribune, May 14, 2007.)
?? A study published in the August 2007 issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise
found that students who took part in more vigorous sports like soccer or football or
skateboarding, did approximately 10% better in math, science, English and social studies
?? According the College Entrance Examination Board, music students scored about 11
percent higher than non-music students on the 2001 SAT. Students with
coursework/experience in music performance and music appreciation scored higher
on the SAT than students with no arts participation. Students in music performance
scored 57 points high in the verbal area and 41 points higher in math, and students
in music appreciation scored 63 points higher on verbal and 44 points higher on
Participation in activity programs yields positive results
after high school as well.
?? Participation in extra-curricular activities provides all students – including students
from disadvantaged backgrounds, minorities and those with otherwise less than
distinguished academic achievements in high school – a measurable and meaningful
gain in their college admissions test scores according to researchers Howard T.
Everson and Roger E. Millsap, writing for the College Entrance Examination Board in
?? In a 2006 research project published by the Center for Information & Research on
Civic Learning & Engagement (CIRCLE), it was found that 18-25 years old who
participate in sports activities while in high school were more likely than nonparticipants
to be engaged in volunteering, regular volunteering, registering to vote,
voting in the 2000 election, feeling comfortable speaking in a public setting, and
watching news (especially sport news) more closely than non-participants.
?? An extensive study commissioned by the Alberta Schools’ Athletic Association found,
in that Canadian province in 2006, an average of 78.3% of Alberta’s top corporate
CEOs and Members of the Legislative Assembly had participated in interschool
sports. Nearly 80% indicated that being involved in school sports significantly,
extensively or moderately complemented their career development and/or academic
pursuits. This same study pointed out that normal participation rate of students in
high school sports is around 30 to 35%.
?? The corporate and political leaders surveyed in Alberta (see above) cited the
following benefits associated with their involvement in high school athletics:
teamwork, discipline, goal setting, leadership, independence, self confidence, stress
relief, character development and personal growth, fair play, and acceptance of
From a cost standpoint, activity programs are an exceptional bargain
when matched against the overall school district’s education budget.
Generally speaking, the NFHS has researched various school districts’ budget information
across the country that activity programs make up only one to three percent of the overall
education budget in a school. In the Midwest, South, and West that figure is even less. In
the 2007 school year, the city of Chicago’s Public School Board of Education’s overall
budget was $4.6 billion dollars, and activity programs received only $36.2 million, a
minuscule one-seventh of one percent (.00789). In the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area, their
Board of Education proposed in their overall 2008 $1.2 billion dollars. Their activity
programs received only $4.7 million dollars, one-third of one percent (.0038). Finally, in
the northwestern part of the country, in the Seattle Public School system, their Board of
Education has a 2008 overall budget of $339.7 million dollars, while setting aside $3.2
million dollars for activity programs for a scant one-ninth of one percent (.00942).
Activity programs fulfill students’ basic needs, help in students’
attitudes toward self and school and minimize dropout
and discipline problems.
?? Researcher Richard Learner, writing in Promoting Positive Youth Development through
Community After-School Programs, found that informal educational and
developmentally supportive experiences offered to young people in the context of
after-school or community-based programs are a potent source of resources
increasing the probability of positive development among youth.
?? In 2003, the Journal of Adolescent Research reported that extracurricular activity
participation is linked to lower rates of dropping out of school, greater civic
involvement and higher levels of academic achievement. Moreover, research tracking
participation from eighth through twelfth grades and examining outcomes in the
postsecondary years concluded that consistent participation has positive effects that
last over a moderate length of time.
?? Extracurricular activities stand out from other aspects of adolescents’ lives at school
because, according to the Winter 2005 issue of the Journal of Leisure Research, they
provide opportunities to develop initiative and allow youth to learn emotional
competencies and develop new social skills.
?? A study conducted by Boston University, and published in Adolescence, Winter 2001,
reported on a survey of 1,115 Massachusetts high school students. Survey results
indicated that athletes were significantly less likely to use cocaine and psychedelics,
and less likely to smoke cigarettes.
?? Researchers writing in 2004 in the American Journal of Health Behavior conducted an
examination of cross-sectional data from a nationally representative sample of high
school students enrolled in public high schools in the U.S. They showed that students
participating in organized sports were 25 percent less likely to be current cigarette
?? Stephanie Gerstenblith and her fellow researchers, writing in the 2005 book,
Organized Activities as Developmental Contexts for Children and Adolescents state, “Just
as schools with efficient procedures and structure have been found to have positive
outcomes, our findings indicate that participants in after school programs with these
qualities experience reductions in rebellious behavior and increases in intentions not
to use drugs.”
Co-curricular activities teach lessons that lead to better citizens.
?? Nancy Darling, et al., writing in the 2005 Journal of Leisure
Research notes that extracurricular activities allow youth to form
new connections with peers and acquire social capital. They are
one of the few contexts, outside of the classroom, where
adolescents regularly come in contact with adults to whom they
are not related.
?? Students who spend no time in extracurricular activities
are 49% more likely to use drugs and 37% more likely to
become teen parents than those who spend one to four hours per week in
extracurricular activities (United States Department of Education. No Child Left
Behind: The facts about 21st Century Learning. Washington, DC: 2002.)
?? On June 23, 2000, then President Bill Clinton issued an Executive Memorandum
directing the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Secretary of Education
to work together to identify and report within 90 days on “strategies to promote
better health for our nation’s youth through physical activity and fitness.” The
resulting report entitled “Promoting Better Health for Young People Through Physical
Activity and Sports was released in November 2000 and stated that “enhancing
efforts to promote participation in physical activity and sports among young people is
a critical national priority.”
?? In a recent report entitled “Sports Participation and Health-Related Behaviors Among
US Youth” published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine from
September 2000, it was reported that “nationwide, 62.4% of high school students
reported participating on 1 or more school and/or nonschool sports teams in the
previous year. The major conclusion drawn from the analyses performed in this
study is that, in the most populous demographic subgroups of US high school
students, sports participation is associated with multiple positive health
behaviors….sports programs may promote positive health behaviors and deter
negative health behaviors by placing a premium on personal health and fitness as
prerequisites to optimal sports performance.”
?? In a study done by researchers at Clark University in Worchester, Massachusetts, in
2001, “middle-school kids in inner-city neighborhoods who play organized team
sports have a higher sense of self-worth and better social skills than their less athletic
peers.” The Clark researchers noted that “kids living in poor urban neighborhoods
have, on average, 40 hours of unstructured, unmonitored time each week.
Organized team sports could be a positive alternative to drug use and other
delinquent activities.” -- “Batters More Likely ‘Up’”, Amanda Gardner,
?? Another study (2001) done by Gary Overton, a doctoral candidate in the School of
Education at East Carolina University, in collaboration with the North Carolina High
School Athletic Association1, of the academic performance of high school studentathletes
in North Carolina revealed significant differences between athletes and nonathletes.
Some of the major findings in the study include:
Grade-Point Average: The mean GPA for athletes in the study was a 2.98, while
the mean GPA for non-athletes was only 2.17.
Attendance: The average number of absences was significantly lower for athletes
than non-athletes. The mean average number of days missed by athletes was 6.3
days per 180-day school year, as compared to 11.9 days for non-athletes.
Discipline referrals: The percentage of discipline referrals by the reporting
schools was lower for the athlete group than the non-athlete group; referrals for
athletes ran at a 33.3 percentage while the referral percentage for non-athletes
was 41.8 percent.
Dropout rate: There was a dramatic difference in the dropout rate; the mean
dropout percentage for athletes was miniscule 0.6 percent, while the
corresponding percentage for non-athletes was 10.32 percent.
Graduation rate: The percentage of graduates was significantly higher for the
athlete group than the non-athlete group; the mean graduation percentage for
athletes was 99.4 percent as compared to 93.51 percent for non-athletes.
1 North Carolina High School Athletic Association Bulletin, Vol. 54, No. 1, Fall 2001

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