I have a neat idea. Feel free to bounce it around (no sports pun intended).
What if highschool varsity sports were funded by professional sporting leagues?
The tax money slotted for public school phys-ed courses should be paying for fitness activities that benefit the average kid, and for teachers who are experienced in matters of health, fitness, and maybe even youth psychology. Fewer kids would be turned off physical fitness if we had more teachers who were sensitive to the concerns of average non-athletes who nevertheless need to know how to keep themselves healthy.
For the few kids who are so good at sports that they want to make a career out of it, there should be some other source of funding. I suggest professional leagues, because those leagues will eventually benefit when those kids graduate (or at least after they graduate college). Also because pro sports leagues make more money than they know what to do with.
For example, the NFL could buy new protective equipment for a boys’ highschool football team. A catch would be that they’d have to double the amount of money given so that a girls’ team at the same school (of the school’s choice, perhaps) would get funding. Alternately, if someone were to give money to re-floor a basketball court that both boys’ and girls’ teams played on, they’d only have to pay once, because it would already benefit both.
This was inspired by two things. First, my own thought is that public school phys-ed focuses too much on competitive sports and only pays lip service to individual fitness and well-being, thus negating its supposed purpose of keeping average kids from becoming couch potatoes. Second, a teacher acquaintance of mine described her school’s (a) refusal to pay for a bus to send a science class to a university technical fair while (b) simultaneously sending a football team on a ‘field trip’ which consisted of letting them loose with spending money to buy lunch and strut around a mall all afternoon.