A recent study polled students, coaches and parents in Ontario to determine the benefits students gain by participating in school sport.  The study was completed by Rob Williamson, a Masters of Arts in Human Kinetics student at the University of Ottawa, and among other things it showed that school sport is an important contributor to Ontario’s education system.  The study also concluded that student-athletes scored higher in specific developmental areas than those students who do not participate in athletics.  

Detailed below are some of the findings of the study:

  • Student-athletes scored higher on 40 of 41 developmental assets compared to students who do not participate in school sport.  On 21 of the 40, the difference was statistically significant, meaning there were true differences between the two.
  • Parents who participated in high school sport themselves believe the experience helped them develop important life skills.

  • Coaches feel student-athletes are developing skills such as leadership, communication, goal setting, perseverance, teamwork, responsibility, and respect.

  • Student-athletes appear to be more engaged and enjoy school more as a result of participating in high school sport.

  • Sport is not the most important aspect of a student-athlete’s life, meaning that high school sport seems to be developing a balanced individual.

  • For coaches, the dual role of teacher and coach increases job satisfaction and contributes to building positive relationships with students.

To view the study and its findings in their entirety, please click here.

OFSAA is a federation of 18 regional school athletic associations throughout the province and is comprised of student-athletes, teacher-coaches, principals and sport administrators all committed to the philosophy of Education through School Sport. OFSAA provides provincial championships for student-athletes, as well as programming which enhances education in Ontario.  For more information visit <> .


Robert Williamson, MA
[email protected]

Tanya Forneris, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
School of Human Kinetics
University of Ottawa
[email protected]

Doug Gellatly
Executive Director
204-3 Concorde Gate
Toronto, ON M3C 5M6
P: 416-426-7438
[email protected]

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