Performing Arts Programs – Springboard to Successful Lives for Millions of Students

Dr. Karissa Niehoff, CEO of the National Federation of High Schools(NFHS) shares in her recent column the value of performing arts programs in the development of students:

Sports, performing arts and other afterschool activity programs have been the springboard to successful lives for millions of students for decades. In the case of many students, it is through these programs — more than the classroom and at home — that they have learned important life lessons such as self-discipline, self-confidence, teamwork and handling competitive situations.

Recently, the NFHS released its first Athletics Participation Survey since the pandemic shutdown. While the reported 7.6 million participants in high school sports was down four percent from the last pre-pandemic survey, there are indications that students are returning to these programs. However, sports represent only a portion of the students involved in high school activities. The hidden gem? Performing arts in the form of music, band, theatre, speech and debate.

According to Dr. James Weaver, director of the NFHS performing arts department, about 92 percent of students who were involved in performing arts programs prior to the spring 2020 shutdown have since returned to playing instruments, delivering speeches, producing theatre shows and creating art in their disciplines of choice. This is great news as these activities are just as important, life-changing and career-impacting as sports. – Dr. Karissa Niehoff, NFHS

Read the entire column HERE


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David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]