My Quest To Teach

November 5, 2011

Raines Vs Ribault; The Duality of athletics and academics

Filed under: Uncategorized — William Jackson @ 8:39 pm

Raines Vs Ribault;
The Duality of athletics and academics

Raines vs. Ribault

The Vikings of Raines High School take on the Trojans of
Ribault High School.

The atmosphere is building to an electrified level at
Raines and Ribault, the stands will be overflowing to capacity.
Alumni will remember clashes of past football glory days. The smell of hotdogs, hamburgers, chili,
popcorn and even crabs will permeate the air.
There will be pep rallies, banners of encouragement,
school fight songs sung, the band will be ready to
perform at half time and all supporting persons
are in their respectable places.

Coaches will refine their speeches and players will
put on their game faces well before the Saturday
evening event. The media will be ready to digitally
catch every play and display every statistic about
player performance and coaches play calling.
Even Sam Kouvaris will have a comment or two on
the six and eleven new shows.

This is a possible scene from the upcoming Raines
and Ribault football game this weekend Saturday,
November 5th at Ribault High School starting at
2:00pm.

On the other side of this coin the division of
athletics and academics; the need is there, but
where are the men and fathers?? Men are needed to
be more involved in the school, with this knowledge
of need it is not as hard as it sounds to be a mentor, volunteer,
role model or even to help tutor a child
in school; it takes a healthy passion and honest
concern for students to be successful in school and
life. Responsible, concerned and mature men can
help young men be successful and overcome
challenges that distract them from academic
success.

Men that are past alumni of these great schools
need to help the academic community now. Men/fathers
that are blue and white collar workers, business
leaders, those serving in the clergy,
and community organizers are needed in schools
across this county. Construction workers, nurses,
law enforcement, doctors, lawyers, custodians,
lawn care specialists, even those who are in
Waste Management your skills to talk to youth
are needed.

Tradition
Mothers have traditionally been the intercessor for
schools. However the challenges youth are experiencing
in school and community are demanding men to make a commitment and be active to the duties as mentors, volunteers and even tutors. It is imperative for men
to go into the schools and contribute to the education of school age young men. There are results when men show concern and participate consistently; social behavior improves, academic growth is evident in grades and
testing, overall respect for teachers improves, and graduation rates go up.

This weekend the stadium will be filled, why can’t
men attend parent/teacher conferences,
school board meetings, Open House, and other
school related activities that are off field
and have academic importance?
Men/fathers are judged by their actions,
they should be judged by their positive contributions
to raising their children and improving their
communities. They should not be judged by how many
women they slept with, how many blunts they smoked.
Men should not be judged by how many times they have
been to prison, how many children they fathered, but
cannot financially or emotionally support.

This is a truth that cannot be denied or disputed.
This is not a complete truth, there are successes
in parenting, but more men/fathers need to be involved
in helping support education not just athletics.

Validation of Data
Data validates men being involved in children’s
lives; schools should be providing men an opportunity
to participate in events geared just to them to help
with social behavior and guidance to academic
achievement for children especially boys. Data has
shown that a dad’s absence in the home through
separation, divorce, incarceration and in some
cases extended military service leads to dangerous
trends for children’s behavior (NHES ’96/‘NCES ’97).

When students get to middle and high school
they are confronted with the pressures of
performance academic standards, state assessments,
peer pressure, drugs and pressures to have sex,
so the need for a strong male figure is needed
to lend an ear to talk about teen pressures and
provide positive advice. The statistics that
children who grow up without a father/role
model are five times more likely to live in
poverty, nine times more likely to drop out
of school and twenty times more likely
to end up in prison, Fatherhood Facts
(fatherhood.com).

Children with involved fathers/men are significantly
more likely to do well in school, have a healthy
self esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior,
and avoid high risk behaviors such as drug use,
truancy, and criminal activity.

Sports a Key Role
Sports can play a key role in helping youth to
gain discipline, self control, and maturity, build
self esteem and create high expectations for success.
The issue is not everyone will play sports. Coaches
fill a void as a father figure, mentor and guide,
but students who don’t have this face challenges.
Theodore Roosevelt said “to educate a man in mind
and not in morals is to educate a menace to
society”; mentors and volunteers contribute
to the overall holistic growth of the students.

Educational Levels
The educational level of mentors should not hinder
their contribution. There are some things a book
nor computer can teach, a computer cannot teach
why a firm handshake, a computer cannot teach
looking a person in the eyes when speaking to them,
a book cannot effectively teach putting
on a neck tie, nor how to carry one’s self in a
job interview, a book cannot teach how and why
to articulate words when speaking on a job and
not using slang, a book cannot instill in young
men why they should pull their pants up and wear
a belt when going to school, church or work.

I state these things to improve a young man’s
appearance and self confidence, setting young
men up for success and a continuation of freedoms
from mental and emotional stereotypical minority
slavery.

As a teacher in public school and higher education
for over 20 years, I see too many youth being
taught how to fail by wrong actions and wrong
role models.

Malcolm X stated, “you can teach a child to
succeed or fail by your action or inaction.”

Man/Father Legacy
In the Bible the understanding of leaving a
positive legacy is known. The Bible says in
Hosea 4:6, “My people are destroyed from lack
of knowledge”. Teaching social behavior and
etiquette is not in curriculums nor addressed in
state standards or benchmarks.
Character traits like: strong work ethic, honesty,
humility, respect, the importance of
responsibility, accountability, and even ethics
and morals need to be taught and modeled.
President Obama in his Third
Annual Back To School speech spoke of ethics and
morality.
Why have our young men of color not provided the
opportunity to listen to our President of the
United States? He provides a “positive message”
with personal accounts, educational success stories
that students can relate to and honest dialogue on
his life. He tries to let youth know they
have great potential and power to shape the
world;education is the key to success and survival.

Conclusion
Stated by Bob Wise, President of the Alliance
for Excellent Education, “The best economic
stimulus package is a diploma”. We are becoming
a high tech society, but how can our young men
compete when they have low tech or no tech skills?

How can they get into college when colleges don’t
want them? Men/fathers do make a difference so
mentor/volunteer/tutor in schools and make a
difference in a young person’s life. Leave a
positive legacy behind. When a man or father
reaches his final resting time he should want to
see he contributed in a positive way when his life
flashes before his eyes. Men/fathers should want
to see something positive left behind, don’t let
the only thing remain is an empty seat at a football
stadium that people will fill with another butt.
Support all the students and all our schools and
be involved.

Raines Vs Ribault;
The Duality of athletics and academics

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