My small town high school valued sports more than anything. In fact, they added an extra gym class called "Bigger, Faster, Stronger" which was commonly referred to as the "football class" by the students. Really, the only kids who took it were the sports-obsessed.
Yet, when our director for the Drama Club resigned in May of 2017, a new one wasn't hired until about November of 2017. Imagine if the football coach resigned and they didn't have a coach for almost their whole season.
And let's not forget to mention that our "band" room is a choir room. Nothing we did sounded right, because it wasn't being the used the way it was meant. We had different "levels" that sections sat on, which end up making the band not sound as good. When I went into my freshman year of high school, they did all these renovations, which meant they didn't fix much that was actually in need of fixing.
I grew up thinking these things were okay because they were normal! I mean, I grew up in the small town, which means I've grown up surrounded by the mentality. I lived kiddie-corner from the football field growing up, so I understood that fall, Friday nights were loud and we'd be listening to the crowd all night long. Friday night football games had the whole town near my house, but when we had our band concerts we basically only had family members show up, it seemed like. The school band my freshman year was very small and we've grown a lot since then.
So how does this affect me now?
Well, I thought that I'd never make it in life if I went into an artistic career. For a while I thought I'd wanted to be in the medical field, then I knew I didn't want to, but I had no idea what to do. I knew, deep down, that I wanted to do something artistic. I repressed it, though, because I'd never been encouraged by anyone other than my family to pursue an artistic career in my future. I remember that once I said in my freshman year of high school that I was considering Graphic Design and multiple kids in my class laughed at me.
Now, I'd look at them and tell them that I'll probably be more successful than they will be, but freshman me just sat there and took it.
Kids are being raised to not appreciate the arts and do not value them. And if you're apart of them, it's obviously a waste of your time. These kids are being deprived of the sense of community you can get even if you are in sports. You can do both! It's always the jocks v the band geeks or band nerds. I know so many people who play sports and do band AND drama. People need to learn to stop segregating these activities and just let kids do what they want to do for extracurricular.
ALL of them can be beneficial if you put the right people in the right teaching positions for them. Kids need to be taught that the arts aren't a waste of yours or anyone else's time.