Students work to balance academics with athletics

Working to manage both their academics as well as their athletics, student-athletes use different methods to successfully achieve a balanced schedule.


***Working on the go…**Traveling to an away softball game, sophomore Jess Deery creates a list of the work she needs to accomplish when she gets home. Having had to leave the last block of the school day early, Deery used the time she had on the bus to organize herself. Arrowhead Photo by Alicia Jones*

Managing time involving school and sports is something many student-athletes struggle to balance and succeed in. Student-athletes and teachers often put forth efforts to create an equal balance between both.
According to football coach and math teacher Ed Gallagher, it is important for students to be involved in sports throughout high school.
“I think sports and any school activity are critical to be a part of the student’s experience,” Gallagher said.
Though, ensuring there is enough time to accomplish all schoolwork and practices including arriving on time and submitting work on time is a constant struggle for student-athletes.
“I get home from practice around 5 p.m., so it’s been a long day of school and then also practice. Then, some days I have another practice afterwards, so I just have to fit homework in between practices,” sophomore softball player Jess Deery said. “It’s really hard to get all of it done.”
According to sophomore dancer Olivia Chesla, sports are very time demanding, as is school.
“Each night I’m usually gone because I live 35 minutes from my studio, so I’m usually gone from 3:15 until around 10:30,” Chesla said.
A tactic Chesla takes to manage this is doing schoolwork on the ride to dance practice or during breaks she has.
“Right now I don’t drive, so sometimes I like to do work in the car, using Quizlet or an app on my phone,” Chesla said. “On Saturdays when we have rehearsal, that takes up most of the day, we get breaks, and you’re not needed the entire day so it’s helpful to bring work to do while you’re not dancing.”
A tactic sophomore swimmer Matthew Potts takes is to schedule himself and focus on each task as it is given to him.
“I have a little bit of a schedule. When I’m at school, I do school. When I’m at sports, I do sports, and when I’m at home, I do what I need to do for that night,” Potts said.
According to Deery, she will shift her focus to schoolwork that she might have missed during the week because sports “dominated” it, to the weekend. In order to accomplish this, she makes a list of everything she needs to get done.
For junior Manny Rota-Talarico, school comes before sports.
“It’s important to make sure that I’m a student first, and athlete second,” Rota-Talarico said.
Gallagher agrees. He allows players to go to their teacher after school if they are behind in a class or missed something for school.
“It needs to be a priority and not an excuse,” Gallagher said.
Chesla says mental health is an equally important factor when considering time management and balancing out a set schedule.
“It’s really beneficial for me to do things to take care of my mind,” Chesla said, “I like to journal my thoughts and meditate a bit.”
According to Chesla, doing that each morning helps to manage the stress of each day, even if it is just a couple minutes.