All Bengals are required to earn at least one gym credit in order to graduate. From those who cannot catch a ball for their life, to students who never really understood the rules of football, we all have to spend 42 minutes of the school day dedicated to the art of physical activity. Should student-athletes really be expected to take a gym class when they already play a sport for the school?
Students who are on school sports teams already have to try out. They are tested mentally and physically, and those who have the knowledge and skills are welcomed to the team. Getting on the team shows they know enough, and they do not need a gym class to relearn the techniques they practice every week.
As Zac Efron’s character Troy Bolten once said, “get your head in the game.” But, that is a hard thing to do when your head is tired of putting all your energy into gym class. The main reason why we have gym classes is so that students are active on a regular basis. Yet student-athletes are already consistently active. They have conditioning, try-outs, practices and games. At some point, we have all heard the moans and groans of student-athletes complaining about how they are tired from practices. Why add to the exhaustion?
Removing gym class from their schedules leaves student-athletes more space for other classes that interest them. A painting class could give time to relax and help to express artistic creativity. An AP class would help raise a weighted GPA and grant college credit. Being an Arts and Humanities school, there are many classes to take, and requiring our Bengal athletes to take a gym class instead restricts them from exploring what Blake offers.
Being both a student and an athlete is a challenge. Between practices and games, hard work and sweat, they deserve a breather.