By John R. Gerdy
John R. Gerdy has visible approximately each part of athletics. he's the son of a highschool soccer trainer; he was once an All-American basketball participant, a legislative assistant for the nationwide Collegiate Atheltic organization, and he served as an affiliate commissioner for the Southeastern convention. In Air Ball: American Education’s Failed scan with Elite Athletics, Gerdy brings all of these views to undergo and argues that the yankee procedure of faculty and group athletics is damaged. yet he's no mere naysayer. He deals a daring, revolutionary blueprint for reforming athletics to fulfill our country’s academic and public wellbeing and fitness wishes. Given better education’s historical function of delivering management in our society, the initiative to revive a extra brilliant stability among athletics and schooling needs to start with the reform of big-time collage athletics. regardless of frequent public skepticism concerning better education’s skill to alter the approach, Gerdy argues that the chance for reform hasn't ever been higher. utilizing a provocative mixture of examine and considerate commentary, he argues that, for the 1st time within the background of yankee larger schooling, the serious mass of individuals, corporations, and outdoors pressures essential to force and maintain innovative, systemic reform of the varsity athletic firm is in position.
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Extra resources for Air Ball: American Education’s Failed Experiment with Elite Athletics
There is nothing in this model that encourages children to become physically ﬁt themselves or to learn about and enjoy the process of ﬁtness. From peewee leagues to our nation’s campuses, encouraging a healthy lifestyle through sport is simply not a priority. If the desired outcome of scholastic athletics is for participants to have fun, develop character, gain conﬁdence, and improve their health, they must be organized and conducted with these purposes in mind. To maximize sports’ potential to positively inﬂuence the health and fitness of our children, the focus of our schools’ investment in sport should be on involving the greatest number of participants rather than spending an increasing amount of time, money, effort, and emotion on only those who might have the potential to play college or professional sports.
Consider, for example, the way we use role models to teach our children certain characteristics and values. Despite the customary scholar-athlete-of-the-week award, the pervasive image of an athlete is that of being dumb. Why else, for example, did we marvel at, and so many media representatives go to such lengths to explain, the success of Princeton’s men’s basketball team? How could a group of intelligent Ivy Leaguers be a great basketball team? (McCabe, 2000, p. 142). The message is clear: physicality and intellectualism are conﬂicting ideals.
While punctuality, hard work, discipline, a strong body, and the ability to produce in a team environment are all desirable worker traits, preparing our country’s workforce to compete successfully in the information-based, service economy of the new millennium will require instilling in 47 48 BEYOND THE IVY-COVERED WALLS students the ability to reason, think creatively, adapt to change, manage large amounts of information, critically assess data, and compute, speak, and write effectively. The “Information Age” will require strong minds developed in classrooms more than strong bodies developed on playing ﬁelds.