Fargo North’s number of athletes consistently dropping each year

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The number of student athletes at Fargo North has been decreasing over the years, something that may be contributing to an argued lack of success for the sports programs here. . Fargo North High School has just under a thousand students roughly every year. This is smaller than Davies and the West Fargo schools, who have about 1200 to 1400 students enrolled. We are currently the thirteenth largest high school in North Dakota, smaller than Central Campus school in Minot (which is just grades nine and ten), Mandan High, and Central High School in Grand Forks. However, this alone does not explain why recently many students are not participating in sports at Fargo North. Specifically, girls basketball has been struggling for numbers. In 2015, they had 44 girls playing, but that number has continued to decrease to a little over 30 players last season.
“Coaches have less selection when it comes to tryouts and throughout the season, and practice can be tough if there isn’t enough players to do most drills. On the bright side, having less players makes the team have more chemistry and become closer on and off the court,” junior basketball player Sami Sanford said.
Many other sports at Fargo North are going through this exact same situation. Girl’s Hockey and the Spartacas dance team have recently been down in numbers. Also many boys’ sports don’t even have close to the same number of kids trying

Spartacas Dance Team is one of the many sports at North who have been low on numbers recently.

out that do at Davies or Sheyenne. Even Girls Soccer, who repeatedly went to state, has recently been low on numbers and have needed to bring up middle schoolers.
According to the National Federation of State High School Associations, nearly 8 million students took part in sports in 2018. This number is down more than 43,000 students from the previous year. Not only are there fewer high schoolers active in athletics, but also fewer kids in youth sports. The Aspen Institute think tank says, “45 percent of kids ages six to twelve participated in sports in 2008. That number has decreased to 38 percent in 2018.”
The Fargo Public Schools Activities Summary Report also showed similar trends. Fargo North’s total number of students involved in one or more activities has continued to decline, while Davies has continued to increase. For example, in 2014 North had 721 students involved in one or more activity, and Davies had 835. By the 2017-2018 school year, Fargo North had decreased to 665 students involved, while Davies increased to 901 students involved.

“I think many sports don’t give the ability to move up. If people don’t think that they can move up in a sport, they will quit. Also, I think a lot of sports have drama around it that keeps potential athletes out. Furthermore, there’s a stigma that you have to be amazing or at least pretty good in order to play,” said a Fargo North student in the recent sports survey sent out by The Scroll.
Many students at North have participated in sports, some have quit for various reasons, some have thought of quitting, and others keep on playing the sport(s) they love. Personally, I have enjoyed every sport I’ve played for at Fargo North. Athletics are a good extracurricular option to meet new people, while getting a good work out in and improving skills. There are many sports such as soccer, cross country, track, and swimming that you can join regardless of ability and skill. If you’ve never been in a high school sport, I’d highly consider joining one of these amazing activities.