Academics may happen in the classroom, but what happens on the field, court, rink, etc. seems to also a play a big role.
Statistics given to the Los Angeles Times by the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) indicates that participation in high school sports is linked with higher GPAs (an increase of between 0.55 and 0.74), higher test scores on the CST in English and math and better attendance.
Commissioner of Athletics Barbara Fiege said she believes this is due in large part to the "guidance provided daily" by coaches "who understand the relationship between academic and athletic success."
If that's the case, schools on the southside could use a big injection of athletics. In the 2009-2010 school year, John C. Fremont High School saw 245 students out of nearly 4,500 students drop out; that same year, Jefferson High saw 109 out of their approximately 2,000 kids quit.
The 2009-2010 academic year was the most recent one for which LAUSD provided drop-out data.
Photo by Jaina Teeluck via Flickr Creative Commons.