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What is Educational Athletics?

In an effort to be even better at something the Michigan High School Athletic Association already does well, MHSAA staff spent four hours with the leader of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, Bill Gaine, who is one of the nation’s most passionate advocates for teaching people what “educational athletics” means and how to actually educate students through school sports.

Here is how the MIAA answers the question: “What is educational athletics?”

  • Interscholastic athletic competition is an extension of the classroom and an educational activity that provides outstanding opportunities to teach life lessons.
  • Through participation in such programs, young people learn values and skills that help prepare them for the future.
  • Leadership, goalsetting, teamwork, decision making, perseverance, integrity, sacrifice, healthy competition and overcoming adversity are inherent in the interscholastic athletic framework and also support the academic mission of schools.
  • Student-athletes earn the privilege to participate by succeeding academically, and the resulting positive outcomes continue far beyond graduation.
  • These programs exist to prepare young men and women for the next level of life, not the next level of athletics.
  • Wins are achieved through athletics by developing successful athletes and teams, but more importantly, wins are achieved through the educational experience by developing successful and responsible students, leaders and community members.
  • The positive educational outcomes of interscholastic athletics do not happen by chance. They happen because teacher-coaches and school administration adopt an intentional and purposeful approach to the interscholastic athletic experience.

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From the Director

From the Director is the official MHSAA Blog which will touch on pertinent school sports topics periodically throughout the school year from various MHSAA Staff.