Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

Breaking News

Z_CNHI News Service

October 1, 2013

Will the lights go out on Friday nights?

(Continued)

Dr. Stephen Daeschner, a retired school superintendent, said attempting to connect America’s rich appetite for sports with the academic success of its public schools and how the country fares on worldwide achievement tests is like comparing “apples, oranges and grapes.” What critics should be observing is a community’s respect for education, said Daeschner, who led the 110,00-student school system in Louisville, Ky., for 14 years.

While some schools may – and oftentimes do – overemphasize sports at the expense of education, one does not need to be pitted against the other. Both can fail, each can excel.

It has been his experience, Daeschner said, that student-athletes generally out-perform regular school students. Besides that, those involved in extracurricular activities in many cases become the leaders that schools and students can coalesce around. “Students will always need peer heroes in sports and academic achievement,” he said. “We adults have a great say in who the school recognizes and celebrates.”

Budgeting pressures are real – choices have to be made – and they are being forced on school administrators across the country. Nevertheless, responsible decisions are being reached, even if some are painful.

Daeschner, like many others, feels strongly that academics and athletics should play a complementary role, not an adversarial one.

“I have never seen a time when students are more engaged and busy than today’s students,” he said. “I think high school sports play an important role in today’s high school.”

It would be tragic if one day those Friday Night Lights were permanently turned off and a community’s student-athletes disappeared into the darkness, never to be seen again.

Tom Lindley is a sports columnist for the CNHI News Service. Reach him at tlindley@cnhi.com.

Text Only
Z_CNHI News Service
Local News
Facebook
AP Video
Trump: DC Hotel Will Be Among World's Best Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Republicans Hold a Hearing on IRS Lost Emails Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: MH17 Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel Clinton: "AIDS-Free Generation Within Our Reach" Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball
Must Read
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Seasonal Content
Video