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STRIKING THE BALANCE

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Photo : Marin Manley and Jaheel Hyde

The most difficult task for is often striking the balance between sports and school. Surely that has been the cry amongst many of our student athletes in our High schools. Many believe and are of the view that it is for that reason why the Inter Secondary schools Sports Association (ISSA) has placed the qualifying standards at a meager 40% in four subject area, for participation in any of its school operated competitions.

There are many opportunities for youngsters to make a living from professional sports these days, but the fact still remains that there needs to be a backup for those who don't make it as a professional in their chosen sporting discipline.

As a line from the good old gem titled Labour learning, “a good education will never decay. This probably has stirred on the likes of Wolmers boy and one of Jamaica’s most talented junior athletes, Jaheel Hyde, along with the St. Jago High school track star Martin Manley in striving for excellence both on the track and in the classroom.

"The heights of great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight but they while there companions slept they were toiling upward through the night". This means today’s student athletes who wants to be among the great men both in academia and track and field are forced to juggle their time between sports and school.

This has seen the young track and field stars reaping very good success in their subjects in the CSEC examinations 2014.

World Junior and world youth Champion Jaheel Hyde posted his Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) results via social media .The 17-year-old student earned eight subjects with grade ones in English Language, Mathematics, Principles of Business and Principles of Accounts; grade twos in Chemistry, Social Studies, Geography and a grade three in Spanish.

Martin Manley said his five years of high school have been rough however it paid off in the end. Manley, the current World Youth Champion over the 400 metres, passed all of the seven subjects he sat this year. He received a grade one in Physical Education, a grade two in English Language and English Literature, a grade three in Caribbean History, Principles of Accounts, Social Studies and Mathematics.

Both athletes are on assignment at the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing China and hoping to do their country proud.

Other outstanding athletes who have made know there CSEC achievements includes the likes of St Jago, Youth Olympic, and World Junior representative Natalliah Whyte and teammate Shanice Reid who were successful in eight subjects and seven subjects respectively. Akeem Bloomfield out of the KC camp has revealed that he was successful in ten subjects and quartermile standout from Papine High school in St Andrew, Tiffany James was also successful in the subjects she sat.

Overall, most student athletes find balancing athletics and academics to be a rewarding experience. This has opened up many opportunities to gain scholarships to continue their athletics and academic careers both locally and overseas. The key goal for the young athletes contemplating the pursuit of their sport as a professional is to approach that commitment by striking the balance and being disciplined and dedicated both in their academics and on the field of play and they will reap the benefit of being " the whole” student athlete .