Person, Not Participant


Photo illustration provided by A. Bond.

Addie Bond, Staff Writer

Activities are bound to conflict in high school especially since students are encouraged to be involved. Students often have to decide which activity to prioritize. The adults around them should support the decision even if their activity isn’t chosen. The relationship between students and adults shouldn’t be compromised, but should instead be respected.

I have been in this position before; I had to make a decision between music and sports. There was a way to do both, but the people involved with one activity said it was all or nothing, and I had to choose. Deciding between two things that I had worked hard for was very difficult. I felt like I was letting people down no matter what I prioritized. In these types of conflicts, the adults’ feelings should not play a factor at all.

Activities should not have the extent of ruining a relationship with a student. After I made this decision, I received backlash from the adults involved with the activity that I could not attend. These were adults who I thought had my back, but they were suddenly very bitter about the situation.

Sadly, athletics and arts do not normally see eye-to-eye. They are two groups that are clearly divided from each other, a division that should not be present.  As kids should be supported by adults, athletics and arts should also support each other. They are in close relation a lot of the time whether it is marching band for football games, or accompanying each other in parades. 

Athletics and arts are important for students’ well-being, and it is important for students to have both experiences. Kids are encouraged to be involved and well-rounded; however, when it really comes down to it, adults do not always support busy kids. They do not like to work around other activities’ schedules or have them miss their activity. In reality, many of those decisions are not made by the students. Parents and teachers heavily influence these choices with little input about a student’s priorities.

Few students participate in both arts and athletics, thus games and concerts are typically scheduled on the same day. It is often that competitions conflict with practices that are just as important. Students are being punished for things they cannot control, and most of these students are spread thin. It is already hard to balance school, sports, music, and family. Having an adult, who’s supposed to be a supporter, lash out and not be flexible just adds more stress to the student and could result in them dropping one of the activities. Every coach, sponsor, and teacher should treat me, and all other students, as a person, not just a participant.