The Instigator
QuantumArgument
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
MonkeyBomb20
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

P.E should not required in schools (Or at least there should be alternatives)

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/1/2017 Category: Education
Updated: 10 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 492 times Debate No: 100427
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

QuantumArgument

Pro

P.E. is a class required by schools all across the country. Yet this class often fails at its main goal of encouraging children to exercise and alienates children by encouraging a violent atmosphere in which the strong prevail and the weak get picked on. Not only that, but it oftentimes affects bright individuals' GPA and is not fair to students' grades and academic achievement. How can you base a grade on wether someone can hit a ball the right way or run a certain distance.. Other activities revolving around P.E. such as having to take communal showers or having to change into a horrible uniform every class also make P.E. a terrible experience and overall reduce students' quality of life.
MonkeyBomb20

Con

First off, I would like to say good luck to you. I feel that P.E, or some type of physical activity, is necessary and should be a required class that should be taken in class. Studies have shown that people that get out and have fun, or exercise, will have a more focused mind when learning a concept. For example, there are workplaces in Sweden that force office workers to go outside/the gym during their break. Data showed that those workplaces had a higher productivity rate. Many people have heard of the Play 60" campaign. This campaign states that every child should exercise for at least 60 minutes a day. Some kids are not able to go outside and get exercise. P.E is an alternative for that group of people. Now, regarding your statement about gifted kids getting lower grades because they are judged on how they hit the ball or how far they can run. With my experience, P.E teachers usually watch you and grade you based on your ability level.

You said, "Yet this class often fails at its main goal of encouraging children to exercise and alienates children by encouraging a violent atmosphere in which the strong prevail and the weak get picked on." I am confused how the P.E class is a violent atmosphere and people getting picked on. May you please explain this to me in you next statement?
Debate Round No. 1
QuantumArgument

Pro

Well, for one, regarding your statement about P.E being an alternative for kids who cannot go outside and exercise, P.E. by itself is not enough to provide children with 60 minutes every day. With the short class length, different schedules, and time needed to change, P.E does not provide children with a significant amount of exercise. Furthermore, it discourages kids to exercise when they really need to, which is outside of school on their own. Getting a bad grade in P.E. feels horrible. How are children supposed to want to exercise it when they associate it with a bad grade and feel as if they cannot physically improve.

To respond to your statement that P.E. teachers usually watch you and grade you based on your ability level. I and others have found that that is not often the case. Teachers often use the widely implemented Fitnessgram tests as a grade, measuring whether the child got a certain score, despite the fact that Fitnessgram recommends that this should not be done. Some schools make students participate in skills tests as well, and students get graded on that. Furthermore, these skills by themselves have very little use. Throwing a ball or running a mile is simply not useful in today's day and age.

To answer your question on why P.E. creates a bad atmosphere, certain practices like the "team leader" system make children who are not the best get picked last, making them feel horrible. P.E. can also empower the good players to pick on the weaker ones. People can get upset if a player who is not that good misses a shot or falls while doing push ups, and revert to hurting that player. There is also the chance that teachers may favor the stronger students over the weaker ones, or dismiss the harmful bullying as competition or peer pressure.
MonkeyBomb20

Con

First, I want to start with your P.E. teachers statement. I have went to 9 different schools and everyone of my teachers have always graded kids on how much energy they exert. Those Fitness gram tests are required by the state and they are usually not part of your grade. My P.E. teachers just do this to see how they are performing in the class. My P.E. teachers also grade the people in our class if they are able to follow the rules and have the basic skills down.

Now to answer your argument about the bad atmosphere. My teachers have always picked kids to go out. Then they choose other kids to go behind the "captains" and that would be a team. Usually, the captains are the same ability level ,so the teams could be even. Also, I have never seen a teacher that likes the most athletic kids if they have a bad attitude or if they think that they are better than all of the other kids. They hate those kids and they like the kids that exert the most effort.

Finally, in response to your first argument. My school makes us have 90 minutes of P.E. class every day. And everyone in my GRADE have never gotten below a 85 in P.E. I am going to re-iterate this: my P.E classes have always been graded off of your effort that you show. I also want to talk about your uniform argument in Round 1. You said that students shouldn't have to wear horrible uniforms. Now, I highly disagree with this. For starters, I tend to wear dressier clothes to school and I wouldn't want to exercise in those. P.E. clothes can also reduce bullying between children. Some people get made fun of for the clothes that they wear. The P.E. clothes eliminates this route of bullying for kids.
Debate Round No. 2
QuantumArgument

Pro

While your statement about your own P.E class may be true, how exactly are teachers supposed to accurately measure how much energy you are exerting? How much is a lot? How do they know that you are not faking exertion? My point is, grading children on how much energy the teachers THINK the students are exerting is not accurate and it is not fair to the student. With class sizes of 30 people, a teacher may take one glance at a child that may be quickly resting and mark him as being lazy and not exerting himself because he/she has to grade the others as well. The whole concept is flawed.

Furthermore, there is nothing other than Fitness-Gram's recommendation (which does not have to be followed) that says that Fitness-gram cannot be used for grading. Since they are required by the state, what's to stop teachers from putting the scores into the grade book? Teachers often think that since they are doing the tests anyway, they may as well make them assessments. Can you image failing P.E because you cannot run 20 sprints? This may not be the case at your school, but it is at many others, some of which I have experienced.

Same thing with the team captain system. Your P.E teacher may not do this, but others may.

As for the clothes, I am sure that even you will agree that the experience of changing in a locker room or practicing basic hygiene with many other people in a musty, oftentimes small locker room is not pleasant. Also, the P.E. uniforms are oftentimes not what people want to wear while exercising. You are basically being forced to pay 20 dollars for a branded shorts and a shirt.

As for your argument about teacher not liking athletic kids who have a bad attitude, I completely agree. But what about the ones that have a good attitude. All other factors being equal, a P.E. teacher will most likely prefer an athletic kid over one who is not, because that kid will appear to be doing better. Once again, the issue comes down to measuring exertion. Because there is no practical way to do this, many teachers resort to grading performance. Even if they do not intend to, it may happen subconsciously.

The fundamental problem here is that the flaws of P.E. are very numerous, even if some vary from school to school, and the benefits are nonexistent. As I said before, P.E. on its own does not provide enough exercise, and it fails and sometimes even backfires in encouraging kids to exercise outside of school. It also sucks an enormous amount of money. Equipment, gym space, repair, and uniforms are just some of the special things P.E. needs. Not to mention the staff cost. This money could be used in a whole variety of uses in school. More technology, better activities, giving teachers a raise, etc. It could even be invested back into high school sports. Extracurricular sports like baseball provide much more enjoyment, fair competition, and most importantly, physical activity. These programs do provide enough exercise to make a difference, unlike P.E.

In conclusion, P.E simply has no purpose in schools. It does not provide nor encourage significant physical activity, and has a host of adverse effects. It is just not worth it.
MonkeyBomb20

Con

You said that there is no way to see how energy is exerted. P.E teachers are trained to see how kids are performing in class and see how much energy they exert. Also, P.E. teachers look at children a lot more than once and they don't only grade them off of one look. Teachers can also tell if you are putting forth your best effort by using one technique; if you are able to talk to your friends while you run. Usually, if you are able to talk to your friends without taking deep breaths or talking with ease, you are not exerting your best effort. I agree with you; some aspects are flawed, but there are less flawed concepts than concepts that are fine.

Secondly, Fitness-gram's recommendation is set in a way that they take the average ability of how the kids in that state perform and then they make that the benchmark. This benchmark is set so that it will be reached by many children. In my schools, if a teacher decides to put it as a grade, it is a pass/fail. If you hit the number, you get a one. If not, you get a 0. Also, I would like to know which school makes you run 20 sprints. I have never heard of a school that makes you run 20 sprints.

I am very confused about your statement about the team captain system. Are you trying to say that P.E. teachers would grade you based on which team you go to. Please explain this in the comments.

As for your first argument on clothes, I agree. It is sometimes unpleasant to change in a locker room. In the first few days of P.E. class, everybody is nervous about changing in the locker rooms together. After the first week, everybody would be talking while they are changing. Some people don't come to school in the proper clothes to exercise that day. The P.E. clothes can stop them from having to not wear the clothes they want to school.

Now you said that P.E. teachers will always favor a more athletic kid if everything else is equal. I agree, but I also don't agree. Sure, a teacher may like the student better, but they wont give them a better grade. Like I said earlier, P.E. teachers just have a way of figuring out if you are putting forth your best effort. Lets say and athletic kid beats a less athletic kid in the mile and the kid that is more athletic didn't exert much energy at all while the less athletic kid exerts as much energy as possible. The teacher will know that the more athletic kid could have done better if they had tried harder. They will give full points to the less athletic kid because he/she exerted as much energy as they could.

I would also like to say that kids tend to like P.E. and it is like a break for them. Most kids, if not all, in my school look forward to P.E. everyday. If schools got rid of P.E. , kids would lose their "break" time.

I believe that P.E. is worth it to schools and that there should be a requirement for kids to take it. Not all people do an extracurricular sport so they should be able to get the exercise in school. I also think that the money invested in P.E. is worth it because the department gets better equipment so that kids will have more fun with the games that they play in school. P.E. also encourages physical activity because people want to try and win whatever they are doing so that they can feel good about themselves.

In conclusion, P.E. has a purpose to schools. Although there are some cons, I think that the pros outweigh them. It encourages physical activity because kids like to win the games. I believe that it is worth it.

P.S------
Thank you for letting me participate in this debate. I feel like we both did well in the debate and I wish you the best of luck.
From,
MonkeyBomb20
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by MonkeyBomb20 10 months ago
MonkeyBomb20
Please don't be a stalemate.
Posted by desttoyer 10 months ago
desttoyer
pe is awsome
Posted by endermends 10 months ago
endermends
PE is a horrible idea. It just takes up classes which I could have allotted towards other requirements/ classes. I'm pretty sure California requires 2 years of PE in highschool. Those 2 years, have done nothing for any of my friends nor me. We gained our points by participating, and by dressing out in "work out attire:". PE is worthless, because it doesn't make us want to exercise more, or become more in shape. It's a great idea in concept, but teachers (in my district) never enforce us working out or anything.
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