With the Toronto Raptors being the latest NBA Champions, the popularity of basketball has greatly increased in Canada. For students at Glenbrook School, the sport of basketball has significantly increased grades in Physical Education on student report cards, and this would not have been possible without the support of EducationMatters, who granted the school funds to install permanent basketball hoops in their gymnasium.

Through the grant the school was able to facilitate a robust physical education program for their students and provide additional opportunities for physical activity, teamwork and fair play. They were also able to implement extracurricular activities for their students, such as their lunchtime Gym Club and morning Spark Club.

“Our initiative was, and continues to be, a success! This is indicated by the increased number of students participating in basketball games during unstructured times, as well as during structured extracurricular activities,” says Brett Kowalchuk, a teacher at Glenbrook School.

The Spark Club in particular provides 20 minutes of vigorous basketball exercise to vulnerable students before the start of their school day, and their teachers have noticed significant changes in the focus and behaviour of many students that had previously struggled in class.

Through an increase of basic basketball skills and health benefits from physical activity, the students are more eager to participate in their physical education class, intramurals, and after-school clubs.

“I feel like an NBA player,” says a grade 6 student.

While Canada is worried whether or not NBA’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) champ Kawhi Leonard will re-sign with the Raptors, EducationMatters is confident that, with your continuous support to provide grants for basketball hoops, a future MVP champ can be an alumni of a Calgary public school!