Part 1 of a series of special reports on extracurricular activities in the Clay Community Schools Corp.
School curriculums alone cannot fully accomplish the goal of preparing students to face college and create a better future.
Class time involves a similar expectation of all students while after-school activities allow students to shine individually.
Instructional time may educate the mind, but extra-curricular activities (ECAs) prepare them for real-life experiences by developing maturity and responsibility in ways a structured class setting cannot.
"Funds spent on ECAs is the wisest money we can spend," Clay Community School Corporation Superintendent William Schad said. "Studies have proven the benefits of ECAs. Students who participate in at least one ECA have better in-school conduct, are less likely to participate in unhealthy behavior out of school and are more successful in academic and peer relations."
While participating in ECAs, a student can build life-long friendships by trying various activities to discover hidden talents or passions. "These experiences lead to future career paths and choices students make in their adult lives," Schad said.
Auditioning for the school play can prepare a student for the challenge of future job interviews.
Performing a solo in band or choir allows a student to build a sense of accomplishment and pride in his or her own abilities.
Struggling through the final moments of a defeat teaches perseverance needed for survival in the tough times of life.
Passing the basketball to another player with the skills to make the shot teaches a student humility and teamwork.
Participating in Bible Club, Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) or other similar groups can make students aware of social issues and beliefs they will carry throughout life.
Clay Community School Corp. provides 271 possibilities for ECA participation throughout the school system. These ECAs simulate the real world in many ways which enable opportunities for students to put life-skills into practice and build successful character traits that will follow them throughout life.
Statistical information from December 2004 provided by Clay Community School Corporation and an ECA Study/Questionaire during the month of January.
Ahead in this series: Where money is being spent on extra-curricular activities and possible ECA budget cuts.
Clay Community School Corporation provides for 271 extra-curricular activities (ECAs) to be made available to 4,701 students with a budget of $362,066.96 for the 2004/05 school year.
Source: Clay Community Schools