Tennis, Interact, Mock Trial, Theater, and Lacrosse; what do they all have in common? They all are not school requirements but yet they require so much of you. Yes, this is referring to extracurricular activities.
Extracurricular are just that; extra. Although they are not a requirement in any means, it is uncommon to find a student who does not participate in an outside interest in some form or fashion. Extracurriculars have had an extensive history on heavily affecting ones school work and health in general but has reached an all-time high in today’s times.
“I rarely have time to do my homework because [soccer] practice tends to run over late and I am not even sure what sleep is anymore,” says Matthew Clay, a sophomore who plays soccer through his rec. center. Outside-of-school activities have the tendency to squeeze out major time for schoolwork and healthy sleeping habits.
Yet, students are expected to balance it all while remaining a passing average in each class. Teanna Walden, a freshman, says, “I usually stay up until midnight, sometimes later than that trying to make sure all my work is done because if I do not, I will get behind in school and I would rather be tired than failing.”
Many students find themselves in this same predicament, especially since school has implemented the “No Pass, No Play” policy which requires students to maintain a passing average in each class to participate in extracurricular activities. Dr. Ruiz commented that is not to put unwanted pressure on students, but to remind them that schoolwork comes before sports and all other activities.
So what is the alternative to not having to worry about never having time for work or going to bed at a decent hour; not participating at all? No, colleges and universities look heavily on your in and out of school activities. You may have perfect grades but it is important to balance it out with a few clubs and maybe or sport or theater.
We would all love to be that person who is president of several clubs, the star athlete on their team, and still manages to make super honor roll, but unfortunately we cannot all be. Taylor Simms, a senior, gives a word of advice to anyone who is having problems balancing school and after school commitment,” Do as much of your work as you can in school that way you won’t have to do as much when you get home. Always, always, always, turn in work on time. If you must turn it in late make sure it is within the week. Any time you have in between after school practices, rehearsals, or meetings squeeze in any work you can. And weekends are BIG. I know they are supposed to be used for relaxation and having fun but you have to be responsible and do your work too.”