There are some concerns about teachers and school officials that are threatening their representative athletes by indiscriminately deducting or refusing to give them grades/ratings while at the same time allowing them to participate in sports competitions. Could these teachers/school officials be held responsible for violating some rules? How should we address this issue?
Education Act of 1982 Rule III, Section 3 (e) mandated that teachers shall:
“…refrain from making deductions in the scholastic rating of pupils or students, for any act that is clearly not a manifestation of poor scholarship”.
On the same basis, special assistance should be given to learner-athletes who are representing their schools during sports competitions by giving them advanced lessons, special tests, self-learning modules, and the like to help them catch up with their lessons.
Since they are representatives of their respective schools, districts or divisions, I believe that they deserve special assistance and other incentives in many forms, no matter if they win or lose.
As teachers, we always have a part in the realization of DepEd’s objective to encourage potential pupils/student-athletes. This is in line with the national goal of the government as provided for under Section 19, Article XIV of the 1987 Philippine Constitution which states:
“the state shall promote physical education and encourage sports programs, league competitions, and amateur sports, including training for international competitions, to foster self-discipline, teamwork and excellence for the development of a healthy and alert citizenry. All educational institutions shall undertake regular sports activities throughout the country in cooperation with athletic clubs and other sectors.”
How Shall We Rate the School Athletes Participating in Athletic Meets?
While there’s no DepEd Order or Memorandum that gives specific guidelines on how the grades of these learner-athletes will be considered, some regional directors and schools division superintendents already took the initiative to address this confusion among teachers specifically.
Using DepEd Order No. 8, s. 2015 Sec V (d) as a basis, all subject teachers are encouraged to give the learner-athletes due consideration in all quizzes, activities, performance tasks on the dates that they are out on training and competitions. It has become a practice that the grades of the concerned athletes must be retained or increased.
Some strict teachers with very high regard for the subjects they are teaching may not buy the idea of giving considerations in rating the athletes. But if we can keep the big picture in mind, and factor in how the many benefits of physical activity and sports programs can help students, the good test scores will follow. When these positive health behaviors combine with improved academic performance, as noted in many pieces of research, it becomes clear that educators should prioritize youth sports as a win-win situation for the school and students.