The Instigator
awesomeness
Pro (for)
Winning
10 Points
The Contender
whyt3nn3rdy
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

physical education should be compulsory

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
awesomeness
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/6/2012 Category: Education
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,230 times Debate No: 23443
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (3)

 

awesomeness

Pro

Debate Parameters
Opponent:This will be an 'Open Debate' and the first member to accept my challenge will become my opponent.
Category:Education
Rounds:There will be a total of 3 rounds of debate.
Voting Period:The voting period will last 3 days.
Time to Argue:For every round of debate, each debater will have 24 hours to post their argument.
Argument Max:Each debater will be allowed to type up to 8,000 characters for every round of debate.
Voting Comments:Members voting on this debate are required to provide comments for their vote.

Round 1- acceptance
Round 2- constructive
Round 3- refutations and conclusion
whyt3nn3rdy

Con

Challenge Accepted.
Debate Round No. 1
awesomeness

Pro

In the UK, Physical Education (PE) is compulsory in state schools until the age of 16 – that is, that sports are compulsory for as long as education is compulsory. Every year, more and more parents complain to their children's schools about PE; they believe that their children shouldn't have to participate in physical activity if they don't want to and that it is not a conducive educational activity or environment. Proponents of PE, however, believe that it is a crucial element of all-round schooling and our society's well-being, particularly with the contemporary rise in levels of obesity in the developed world and the proliferation of high-fat, sugary food and drink. They insist PE in schools remains one of the few places whereby the youth can be forced to participate in aerobic exercise.

Point 1: Sports promote a healthier lifestyle
Participation in sport promotes health. The effect on self-esteem and well-being as a product of sport can only be experienced by certain children if forced by their schools to first participate. A recent report to the European Parliament declared 'physical education is a springboard for involvement in sport and physical activities throughout life'[1]. Government is, or should be, concerned with the health of its citizens. Encouraging physical activity in the young through compulsory PE fights child obesity and contributes to forming lifelong habits of exercise. This doesn't have to be through traditional team sports; increasingly schools are able to offer exercise in the form of swimming, gymnastics, dance, weight training, use of a multi-gym, aerobics, etc
[1] Hardman, K. (2007). Current situation and prospects for physical education in the European Union. European Parliament

Point 2: Physical education helps to forge skills that will prove invaluable in later life
Physical education helps to forge character and the mutual respect required to succeed in an adult environment. Playing team sports builds character and encourages students to work with others, as they would be expected to do in most business or sporting environments. Sport teaches children how to win and lose with good grace and builds a strong school spirit through competition with other institutions. It is invaluable to imbue with children the delicate balance between a competitive rivalry that encourages effort and, on the other hand, losing the fairness and respect required to enjoy sport. It is often the experience of playing on a team together which builds the strongest friendships at school, which endure for years afterwards. As was noted in a report to the European Parliament, 'PE...helps children learn to respect and value their own bodies and abilities, and those of others'[1]. Compulsory physical education is the only means by which all children can be forced to appreciate such advantages.
[1]Hardman, K. (2007). Current situation and prospects for physical education in the European Union. European Parliament.

Point 3: Compulsory physical education will improve national sporting achievement
The quest for national sporting achievement begins in schools. If schools don't have compulsory PE, it is much harder to pick out, develop and equip athletes to represent the country on a wider stage. Even with a 'sports academy' model run along Australian lines, it's much easier to find suitable individuals with a full sports program in every school. In the UK seventy per cent of state-school students are dropping PE when it becomes optional; it is no surprise that up to 30% of its Olympic athletes are now privately-educated, where physical education is compulsory until the end of one's education[1]. State education is not just about aiding the individual it's also about the state getting a good return on its investment – in a well-educated populace to drive business and entrepreneurialism etc. This applies equally in sports.
[1] Laing, A. (2010, February 2). Third of British 2012 Olympic Athletes privately educated. Retrieved May 18, 2011.

Point 4: Sports teams require the support of schools and the encouragement of physical education
Without school support, sports will collapse. If compulsory physical education classes aren't in place, then team activities will end by sheer lack of numbers, no matter if several very talented individuals are at the school (or even potentially talented – they'll never know without the program). New surveys in the United Kingdom have found that they expect to see a fall in sporting events provided in schools due to cost-cutting, despite the upcoming Olympics inspiring students to want to compete[1]. If voluntary take-up of sport in schools is too low, then schools will shut down PE programmes so that there is no choice at all. Not everyone is academic: why deprive those talented sports students of their one chance to shine? Athletes who lack academic prowess are required to stick at classes like maths even if it appears obvious their career path is in sport; why should mathematicians escape from their respective obligation to compete in sports?
[1] The Labour Party (2011, April 18). Competitive school sports expected to fall, survey reveals. Retrieved April 19, 2011.

Point 5: Schools can punish students who do not participate in the classes with further PE lessons
Compulsory PE lessons can be treated in the same manner an ordinary educational class is treated; if the student refuses to participate and therefore does not do their work, they are punished with extra work of that same class. In this case, that would necessitate added physical education exercises at a later date or immediately after the class. The excuse that the student does not wish to participate in the class should be seen as no different to if it were stated during a maths or English class, where it would not be accepted. The fact that physical education is qualitatively different to those classes is irrespective; once deemed a compulsory subject, and therefore beneficial, it must be accepted and completed.

Sources:
-- Active Living Research. (2007). Active Education: Physical Education, Physical Activity and Academic Performance. San Diego.
-- Batty, D. (2008, February 21). Schools make children more obese, leading doctor says. Retrieved May 18, 2011, from Guardian.
-- BBC News (2001, August 8). Rugby injury wins �100, 000 in damages.
-- Hardman, K. (2007). Current situation and prospects for physical education in the European Union. European Parliament.
-- Marshall, J., & Hardman, K. (2000). The State and Status of Physical Education in Schools in International Context. European Physical Education Review, 203-229.
-- UNESCO. (1945, November 16). Constitution of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. Retrieved May 18, 2011.
-- UNESCO. (1978, November 21). International Charter of Physical Education and Sport. Retrieved May 18, 2011, from United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
whyt3nn3rdy

Con

I will offer a brief introduction to my case, pose my case, and then refute Pro's.

I will be arguing the side of this debate that rejects the motion to make PE compulsory in state schools until the age of 16 because that is about as specific as Pro is as to what "physical education should be compulsory" means.

I clearly don't believe that the youth should "be forced to participate in aerobic exercise," as Pro argues. PE, while a great physical outlet for people, should not be compulsory for the reasons that Pro introduces his case with. When he claims that "every year, more and more parents complain to their children's schools about PE" and believe that "it is not a conductive educational activity or environment." Unlike Pro argues, when PE is forced, it seems that it in fact can lower one's self-esteem. Pro looks at the physically fit, and ignores the skinny debate kids, like myself. I will elaborate on this later in my arguments.

Contention 1: Forced To Constantly Be Picked Last

PE doesn't exactly sounds like heaven to most kids like myself that believe that it is only damaging to our self-esteem. Being the skinny debate kid, I was always picked last for any game of dodge-ball, kickball, soccer, football, etc. I was always picked last. If it wasn't me, it was one of 5 other people in my gym class. PE essentially divides up a class of students into the fit and muscular and to the skinny and nonathletic. This is modern day gym, and you want to force people to participate in this kind of humiliation? Even when it comes to simpler things, like yoga, or jogging, there are always winners and losers. And although Pro may argue in his own case that the winners get a self-esteem boost, most people with this argument forget about the people like me.

Contention 2: Let's Just Punish Them Some More, Shall We? No.

PE is a miserable class for most people who just don't want to participate. Do you really think forcing them to participate will make them like or accept it better? If they aren't accepting PE now, and refuse to participate, do you think that forcing this subject on them will lead them to come to participate anymore? Sure, PE could be used as punishment (I'll elaborate when I refute Pro's case), but that's too far from fair to count as legitimate. Many people don't participate because it makes them feel bad, and to make it compulsory would make them feel worse. A person's self image is the most important thing to them. Is someone's self image is bad, whether they be too skinny, or too large, or the like, gym does not help them accomplish a better one.

Now, onto my opponents case.

Point 1: Promoting A Healthier Life Style or Promoting A Healthier Body Image?

A life style and a body image are completely different. "The effect on self-esteem and well-being as a product of sport can only be experienced by certain children if forced by their schools to first participate." I completely agree, but as I have already proven that this is not always a positive effect. PE has never convinced me, or many of my classmates (we'll consider them average), to take up some form of lifelong exercise habit. Besides, even if PE does promote a healthier life style, this is not superior to a healthy career. In a society where the recession has become the main thing on people's mind, we all want (as high schoolers) to know that we can leave here, get to college and into a job that will provide for us. When schools waste their time with required PE courses, they limit the ability they have to improve scores, ensuring a high school student's spot in a good college. If instead of focusing on scores, and forcing students to run around in circles with eachother, we do not ultimately use the time wisely [1].

Point 2:

Though Pro may be correct that PE essentially has people working together, it is in a competitive nature. Playing games like football or dodgeball does force people to work together on a team, but only for the sole purpose of beating the opposing team. Teaching people to physically beat others and try to prove themselves to be better than another simply because of physical advantages. This goes to show that PE does not forge skills that are invaluable in later life, but forges skills that are dangerous to adapt to every PE period until you're 16 [2]. Learning respect for their teammates may be one lesson in PE, but it is not the greatest one. We are talking about teenagers, not only children. Teenagers are competive, always focused on proving themselves. When they are able to fully express it with their physical abilities, they will, in any mannar they can.

Point 3:

While national achievement in sports may be important, It does not outweigh the strive to be successful in the business world. You need to be the absolute best of the best to make anything out of a sports career, whereas in another business, you are more likely to be able to hold a job and still learn in the process. The 30% of Olympic athletes that come from private schools are obviously into the sport they compete it. However, this is no where near true for all teenagers. Teenagers that do not expect to make a living out of a sport clearly should not be forced into taking up Gym every year [3]. PE is optional for exactly that reason. While PE is optional, people who wish to go into a professional sport may take the class, and those who wish to slim down can participate as well. However, those who do not plan on this field would be forced into participating just because the state wants everyone to be athletes.

Point 4: Encouragement Is The Key Term, Here

Yes, sports teams do require the support of schools and the encourage of physical education. However, compulsory PE courses are not the way to achieve this. those who wish to play sports can easily go into the PE course with others that have to get a gym credit for one year of high school. This will give everyone the practice they need, and let them decided whether or not a career or future in physical education or sports is right for them. Optional PE courses for anyone who has already taken at least one credit or two credits (the average for High School) solves this problem [4]. Schools can encourage PE and sports and not have to force the students who do not require this kind of course to take it. Pro makes a good point in that is sports players have to do math, why don't mathamatitions have to play sports? However, it's simple. Math is one subject that will help you throughtout your entire life, no matter what job you have. You always need to balance a checkbook, etc. Though we all seem to claim we'll never use it, we always do. However, sports are areas that many people don't have to be able to do in order to succeed [5]. I don't have to know how to play football if I'm programming a CAT Scan machine, do I?

Point 5: Yay! Another Form Of Punishment!

What Pro doesn't seem to realize is that many schools do not give you extra work if you refuse to do your own. They simply enter in a zero and let your grade take the price. You are not given more work, because it is strictly unfair to be given work that you will not be graded on in the High School level. Making one student do more work than another doesn't seem fair, now does it? Not to say that the student will do this "extra work" either. The fact is, if told you are going to have to run extra laps because you did not run the initial set, what are the chances that you will run them [6]? Failing gym is a constant joke in many High Schools. You fail it one year, then it becomes compulsory to take it the next. This is fair enough in forcing students to take a class. If they fail it, they take it again. But why should they be foreced to take it again if they already have the substantial credit? It's like making a kid take Algebra 1 for 4 years in a row. Besides, when is punishment okay? If a kid is too unconfident to participate in the first place, why is it fair to force him to participate even more the next time?
Debate Round No. 2
awesomeness

Pro

Refutations of opponents case

Contention 1: Students are being picked last
PE encourages people to work at their own pace and will develop skill over time
Now PE teachers are dividing kids into groups by skill level to help them.
The Kids can create their own teams and can get it approved by their PE teachers
This problem can be solved and kids can become healthy

Contention 2: Let's Just Punish Them Some More, Shall We? No.
If students are not forced to exercise in youth, many will never think to do it in adulthood. This is no idle question: obesity in the US is rising rapidly and Dr. David Haslam believes schools are part of the problem. Individuals have no right to 'choice' about this: they're being compelled to attend school, to take the lessons the state says they should take. The state doesn't just impose a curricular compulsion, since physical attendance is forced – so there's nothing unique in principle about enforced PE. Indeed, what can be more important as an aim for our schools than to encourage public health?
It is in recognition of that fact, that in 1978 UNESCO recognised PE as ‘as essential element of lifelong education.'
If PE is made voluntary, it seems obvious that many students – against their long term interests, and the long term interests of society – will choose not to. That will damage this essential element of education, and damage public health. It is true that the health of society is not perfect even with compulsory PE – but how much worse might it be without it?

Sources : [1] Batty, D. (2008, February 21). Schools make children more obese, leading doctor says. Retrieved May 18, 2011
[2] UNESCO. (1978, November 21). International Charter of Physical Education and Sport. Retrieved May 18, 2011, from United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
whyt3nn3rdy

Con

First, I would like to point out that every argument I made attacking my opponent's case was dropped. So I will move onto my own.

Contention 1: Students are being picked last

Pro drops my real argument, and just extends his own here. My point was about self-esteem, and Pro pretty much throws that out without mentioning it. He talks about individual groups of students of the same health working towards being healthier which was not my point at all. Pro says that "this problem can be solved" but he does not offer more to that other than that individual teams can be formed with a teacher's permission.

Please extend my arguments from this Contention.

Contention 2:

Pro also drops this entire argument and changes it to one of public health. This was not my intention of this argument, and therefor he dropped it entirely.

Please extend my arguments from this Contention as well.


When it comes down to voting issues the main one appears in Pro's drops. He dropped pretty much absolutely everything I said. Therefore, thie debate defaults to Con.
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 2 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
Did you just not want to argue everything, or...?
Posted by awesomeness 2 years ago
awesomeness
trollolololol
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 2 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
I'll have to post my sources in my next round or something, I ran out of characters because you had fun introducing 5 points. XD
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by imabench 2 years ago
imabench
awesomenesswhyt3nn3rdyTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: pro provided some decent arguments and the con's rebuttals seemed largely to be his own opinion rather than what is observed, as shown by his lack of sources. Pro did drop most of con's arguments but his initial points were still superior to the con's about why PE shouldnt be compulsory, so args and sources go to the pro
Vote Placed by 16kadams 2 years ago
16kadams
awesomenesswhyt3nn3rdyTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:20 
Reasons for voting decision: Neither made convincing arguments, at all. Sure pro proved it was "good", con made that disputable and it seemed like a tie. Neither side wins args. Sources though go to pro as he had them.
Vote Placed by Travniki 2 years ago
Travniki
awesomenesswhyt3nn3rdyTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Con went at this debate by saying that all PE class is bad to a lot of kids, not just compulsory PE class. I didn't buy the "Unfit kids will feel left out" argument and Pro convinced me to support his side