I would never argue that athletic programs are more important than the academic programs of schools.  In fact, here are the first four of the “Ten Basic Beliefs of Michigan Interscholastic Athletics” found in the MHSAA Handbook:

  1.  Interscholastic athletics were begun outside the school day and curriculum and remain there as voluntary, extracurricular programs in which qualifying students earn the privilege of participation.
  2. Interscholastic athletics are not courses offered by schools but are tools used by schools to reach and motivate students and to rally support within the community for schools’ academic and activity programs.
  3. In order to justify school sponsorship, interscholastic athletics must be compatible with the academic mission of schools, giving priority deference to the academic schedule and requiring proper decorum at athletic events.
  4. Interscholastic athletics are secondary to the academic program of schools and are partners with schools’ non-athletic activities in providing students opportunities to develop loyalty and school spirit, to practice teamwork, hard work, discipline, sacrifice, leadership and sportsmanship and to gain lifetime appreciation for the arts, sports and healthy lifestyle.

Nevertheless, it worries caring, cautious people like me that school districts have found it necessary to reduce essential oversight of their programs during drastic local school budget restructuring.  For unlike most academic programs, the interscholastic athletic program operates in an arena of high emotion and risk of injury.  People get excited, and people get hurt.

These programs do good things for students and our communities only when they are well run; and they cannot be as well run as they can be and should be with inexperienced, part-time administrative oversight.

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From the Director

From the Director is the official MHSAA Blog which will touch on pertinent school sports topics periodically throughout the school year from various MHSAA Staff.