The initial discomfort of having a new schedule has begun to wear off as students have become more accustomed to 48-minute classes and the dreaded four minute passing period. For me, it has been a fairly seamless transition, easy sailing. It seems like the district is cutting out the fat, and that is something I can get behind. That being said, the new district policy regarding morning practices accompanying the schedule changes has been met with some less-than-favorable responses amongst athletes.
For those uninvolved in sports, the policy mandates that all practices are to be held after school for only a limited number of hours.
I can’t speak for every team, but as a runner, practicing in the morning is something that I rely on, particularly with heat of early September beating down on my sweaty back. I don’t envy those who get to smell me after practice.
Joking aside, as a member of any sport that is physically taxing, dehydration can become a serious issue. The heat impedes the ability of athletes to perform at their best. Last year, I practiced three of my weekday mornings, and I absolutely loved it.
The difficulty in challenging the new policy is that while I’m not fond of it, I completely understand the reasoning behind it.
According to Assistant Principal for Student Activities Robert Murphy, the change is due to demand from parents to reduce the amount of time that kids are at school and to assist in relieving sleep deprivation, an issue that plagues many high school students. I won’t deny that I’ve had a few 2 a.m., coffee-induced, hyper-speed essay writing sessions, and while I can assure you that it isn’t fun, it has nothing to do with my being on a sport.
See, athletics are not the only time-suck teens have to deal with. When students have other obligations after school, like me working on this very paper, they become less reliable to their teams. On multiple occasions, I have gone for runs on my own in the morning, off EGHS property, so I could attend after school activities. Whoops. I sidestepped the system.
There is no way to blanket every athlete with the same policy because it impacts each person differently. There may be an athlete roaming the halls content with only having after school practice. Who knows?
It may be more difficult, but the district needs to devise a system that adapts to the needs of different students.