Using High School Football to Promote Life Skills and Student Engagement: Perspectives from Canadian Coaches and Students

Martin Camiré, Pierre Trudel


In Canada, adolescent boys have been shown to have a higher high school dropout rate compared to girls. This situationis particularly evident in the country’s second largest province by population, Quebec. The sport of Canadian footballhas recently gained in popularity in Quebec as many people believe that the sport can be used to promote both life skillsand student engagement. The present study’s purpose was to document coaches’ and students’ perspectives on studentdevelopment through participation in high school football. Nine coaches and 18 students were interviewed throughindividual and focus group interviews and shared how they believe that students benefited personally and academicallyfrom playing high school football. Nevertheless, both coaches and students faced several challenges during the seasonthat influenced the benefits students gained from their participation in sport. Findings suggest that high school sport,and more specifically high school football, can facilitate the positive development of students. However, to effectivelypromote student engagement, coaches must continually put in place strategies that help maintain students’ motivationtoward school.

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World Journal of Education
ISSN 1925-0746(Print)  ISSN 1925-0754(Online)

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