More than games

The ongoing discussion about the value of athletics is taking on a literal sense at USD 410. The board of education has included five high school programs for possible termination if the state-funding shortfall for 2010-11 is as bad as it presently appears.

Some folks have long believed athletics has overshadowed the truly educational components of the academic experience. Certainly, this newspaper has been criticized for giving more coverage than it should to athletics.

We?ve always felt high school athletics was integral to the educational process. It keeps youth constructively engaged. It teaches discipline, goal setting, the value of teamwork and taking direction. Beyond school walls, it can build positive community pride and identity.

The real issue facing USD 410 is not whether athletics is a valuable educational tool. The issue is determining how broad a program it can afford to offer in these challenging economic times. ?DR

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