Keeping students engaged in school is vital to their development and success in the classroom.



That’s the message Pittsburg High School officials wanted to get across by participating in the 30th annual National High School Activities Week.

Keeping students engaged in school is vital to their development and success in the classroom.

That’s the message Pittsburg High School officials wanted to get across by participating in the 30th annual National High School Activities Week.

“The week (Oct. 10-16) emphasized the value of athletic and non-athletic activities programs to both the student participants and the community as a whole,” said Doug Hitchcock, PHS athletic/activities director.

Hitchcock said that the activities programs at PHS are a very important aspect of the educational experiences offered to the school’s students.

The high school offers more than 20 clubs, 13 sports teams and cheerleading and dance teams, including music, debate, athletics, speech, academic competition and leadership programs.

The goal, Hitchcock said, is to provide opportunities for PHS students to develop both physically and emotionally.
“School activities programs are developing this community’s future leaders,” Hitchcock said.

Pittsburg USD 250 Superintendent Destry Brown said keeping the students active with one another is “one of the biggest assetts to our district.

“It builds pride in their shool as well as working with teams,” Brown continued. “It’s vital to the life of our school.”

Hitchcock said PHS appreciates help from outside its hallways as well, and officials honored two members of the community — Vicki Highfield and Joe Beitzinger — with the Award of Excellence at the Oct. 22 football game.

Hitchcock said they were chosen for their continued support of activities at PHS and for their outstanding sportsmanship.

According to Hitchcock, more than 50 percent of PHS students are involved in some sort of activity. But that only eats about two percent of the school’s budget.

“This makes them the best bargain in education.” Hitchcock said.

Recent Kansas high school statistical reports, substantiated by past national surveys reveal that students participating in high school activities have high academic averages, better attendance records and stay in school at higher rates than those who do not participate.

Brown said he thinks the program is worthwhile.

“Keeping kids engaged in school is very importants, and that’s our best way to do it,” he said.