Emma’s Dilemma: Perry student athletes ‘put the student first’


Perry student athletes ‘put the student first’

We have all heard it, “you’re called a student athlete: the student part comes first.” Athletes are told from the beginning to put their academics before their sport. But balancing academics with a varsity sport is easier said than done.

Athletes practice until about 4pm after school every day, that is if they do not have a game, which lasts even longer. When they get home they have to do their math homework, a history project, study for a chemistry test, and write an essay for English. They need eight hours of sleep so they can perform the next day and they need to find time to eat and replace all the calories they have burned off.

It is a lot, but it is doable.

Balancing sports, grades, and other extracurriculars is difficult, but it is a choice. For most athletes however, the sacrifice is well worth it. There is nothing better than excelling in your sport and achieving all your goals; both on the field and in the classroom.

This does not make academic and athletic achievement any less noteworthy and the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) is well aware of this. That is why they recognize varsity athletes  and team average GPAs of a 3.5 or higher. In the fall sports season, 57% of individual athletes and six teams met this criteria at Perry. All ten teams had at least a 3.0 average GPA.

These statistics display the outstanding success of Perry. We are still a fairly new school, but we are already known for academic achievements. However the fact that our varsity athletes are a huge part of this success says a lot about the priorities of Perry. We, like the cliche phrase, are ‘putting the student part first.’

Perry is getting a great reputation; our athletes can compete on the field, but more importantly they can shine in the classroom.

Athletes are taking the initiative to do well in school. Many athletes take honors and AP classes. They join extracurricular activities like KEY club and National Honors Society (NHS). They are doing all these amazing things for themselves. By excelling in these clubs, sports, and in academics, they are setting up their futures.

As much as we hated being told to put our academics first when we were little, it is starting to pay off. Our athletic programs has sent athletes to Harvard and Stanford and countless other great schools. On signing day this year, Perry saw another great group of kids commit to playing at the next level.

Between the 135 fall athletes who will be receiving the AIA Scholar Athlete Award and the handful of athletes committed to continuing their athletic/academic success in college, Perry athletes are truly ‘putting the student first.’