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The Daily Tar Heel

Making the grade: Schools should require minimum GPA for athletes

High school student athletes should be held to the same academic standards as every other high school student.

So it makes sense that Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools is considering a 2.0 grade point average requirement for high school students who want to participate in their school’s athletic programs.

Currently, the school system follows the standards set by the N.C. High School Athletic Association which only requires that students pass five courses the previous semester to be eligible.

The proposed policy would be based on the student’s performance in the previous semester, not on the cumulative GPA.

Guilford County and Charlotte-Mecklenburg school districts have already implemented this policy.

If the proposal is adopted, next year’s crop of freshmen would follow these new guidelines.

It’s important that students who want to participate in sports are able to do so. But their primary goal should be education, and it’s essential that these students have a solid academic foundation.

The policy should also be extended to include students taking part in other types of extracurricular activity, another possibility outlined in the proposal.

If a student’s grades are dropping because he or she is dedicating too much time to extracurricular activities, then it’s time for that student to invest more in his or her school work.

Sure, some of these students are aspiring to play professional sports after high school. But most of them will not make it, and the school board owes it to every student to ensure they are prepared to join the work force or enrol in post-secondary education.

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