BY KENT MILLER
Published on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 19:02
Steve Bragg, Mesquite ISD athletics director, was already beaming this week about all five of the district’s varsity football teams being included in the SportsDay area rankings and all five teams also being in playoff position with the 2013 season entering its final month – both firsts for MISD.
And then he got the reports on how MISD athletes performed in the classroom for the first six weeks of the 2013-2014 school year.
And that news was even better.
Many a season has been derailed by the state’s no-pass, no-play edict that was instituted in the mid-1980s but MISD athletes – from high school varsities all the way down to the middle schools – were on top of their classroom games, according to Bragg.
Bragg said that at the high school level, 91.7 percent of the district’s varsity athletes passed all of their classes during the first six weeks while 86.1 percent of junior varsity athletes and 82.4 percent of freshmen stayed eligible. Leading the way was Poteet High School, where 97 percent of the varsity athletes made the grade in their academic pursuits.
Dr. Linda Henrie, MISD superintendent, was equally impressed.
"I am very proud of the both the academic and athletic achievement of our students,” Henrie said. “Research repeatedly shows that students who are involved in extracurricular activities achieve higher grades. Participating on a team teaches students how to work together, to make decisions in the best interest of the team and to accept others' ideas as well as their own. However, students must also be organized, focused and have a strong work ethic to succeed at both."
At the middle school level, the passing rate for 1,078 female athletes was 96 percent, with Kimbrough eighth grade, Agnew eighth grade, Wilkinson eighth grade, and Berry seventh grade all having a perfect 100 percent passing rate. Almost 99 percent of seventh-grade girls passed all of their classes. For 1,220 middle school male athletes, the passing rate was 89.5 percent, with Agnew's eighth-grade boys at 98.6 percent.
According to the Texas Education Agency, a student who at the end of any grading period receives a grade below 70 in any class (other than an identified class eligible for exemption) or a student with disabilities who fails to meet the standards in the Individual Education Plan may not participate in extracurricular activities for three school weeks.