Schools across the country are cutting extracurricular programs.
What do you think?
The depressed state of the economy is mentioned in almost every news article you read today. It’s not pretty out there. Rising unemployment numbers, employees on strike, and more and more budgets cut. It’s not only affecting adults…what about all the kids whose dreams are compromised? The athletes that no longer have a practice to attend after school or a sense of accomplishment for making a sports team? Or what about the young musicians and artists who no longer have a place to perform a challenging tune or showcase their beautiful art? These concerns are becoming a reality as schools across the country continue to cut extracurricular programs due to financial restraints.
Since school programs are often funded with state dollars, and state budgets are experiencing massive cuts, public schools are experiencing a great deal of financial stress. One solution to saving money has been to cut extracurricular sports programs. But where does that leave the students? Sporting events are not only a great way for young adults to learn about teamwork, but also to build confidence and possibly gain leadership skills. Not only that, but school programs are also a great activity for spectators…keeping children out of trouble and in the stands to support their home team. If schools continue to cut athletic & fine arts programs, athletes and talented artists who were hoping to get a college scholarship are also left in the cold. Parents are also be affected by not being able to enjoy watching their children excel at something they are passionate about.
Like myself and many of my friends, I’m sure many of you remember some competitive school activity that helped define the adult you have become. Competition, hard-work, striving to achieve goals, being a team player…all these values can be applied in our career and help create self-awareness and self-confidence.
Over the past year there have been articles written about this dilemma in The Washington Post, educational sources such as EDU In Review, and various local news outlets directly impacted by these types of decisions.
So what are school administrators, coaches, parents and students to do? One temporary solution has been to initiate school fundraising programs. There have been a few success stories of school groups who have raised enough fundraising dollars to “save” their sports and arts programs. These types of fundraising activities include walk-a-thons, selling discount cards to the community, hosting online auctions, and simply reaching out to the community for donations.
Let us know if we can help your school determine the right fundraising event for you. Here’s an example of a School who recently raised more than $68,000 fundraising: http://www.dojiggy.com/app/customers/stories/fsd.cfm
We’d also love to hear your thoughts about this topic and please share your stories!