Required Extracurriculars May do More Harm than Good

Forcing Students to Participate in Extracurriculars May Affect the School Environment in a Negative Way

MURRAY, NEB.-Recently, schools have been discussing requiring students to participate in at least one extracurricular activity in order to increase school involvement. If this new policy is enforced, it may do more harm than good for school environments. While students should be encouraged to participate in an extracurricular activity, it should not be a requirement.

There is no way of knowing what is going on in a particular student’s home life, and there are also many circumstances that stop students from participating in school-sanctioned extracurricular activities. Lack of resources, such as transportation or equipment, may be a factor that is limiting involvement. Even if some students don’t have these problems, there are many students who are already involved in clubs or activities that the school does not provide, and there are even students who are in the workforce.

There is usually a reason that students choose not to participate in activities. Even if these reasons are due to lack of interest, requiring students to participate in things that they don’t want to do may cause them to dread said activities. Having someone in a club or team that doesn’t want to be there is practically the same as not having them on the team. If the student doesn’t apply themself to their extracurricular and is miserable the whole time, it may affect the environment surrounding the activity and drag the willing participants down.

The point of school is for students to learn, even if some argue that it is to form relationships and put yourself out there. The learning environment in school may be affected by required extracurriculars. Forcing students to take on more things than they may be able to handle would have a negative effect. Some students do not perform well under pressure and can get stressed very easily if they have too many things going on at once. The stress of having to worry about getting good grades, a possible job or hobby that isn’t provided by the school, and an activity that a student didn’t want to participate in in the first place may be too much for someone. It is hard enough for students who actually enjoy their activity to balance all of those things.

There are ways to increase involvement without requiring students to participate in activities that they do not want to be a part of. Putting up posters, having meetings, and actively seeking out new members who are hesitant but willing will benefit the school more than forcing students to participate. If the goal is to increase the amount of people in activities, it should be done with people who want to be involved rather than people who were forced into an activity that they didn’t want to do.