Physical education at schools in the spotlight

08 July 2020 | Education

The ministries of education and sport together with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and representatives from NANSO, NSSU, UNICEF, Physically Active Youth (P.A.Y.), Basketball Artists School (BAS), Technical Basketball Academy (TBA) and an NGO from Omaheke region called Gobabis Youth Development Academy (GYDA) and schools, recently conducted a workshop to create a roadmap for the Integrated Physical Education and School Sports (IPESS) programme.
These stakeholders are in the process of developing an IPESS policy because physical education and sports should be an intrinsic part of any learner’s overall development and forms part of their healthy lifestyle. The IPESS programme builds on the “sport for development” concept that has already been rolled out and implemented successfully across the nation.
Workshop participants pooled their creative resources to develop a marketing, media and communication strategy to engage learners, teachers, school officials, parents and the private sector, amongst others to stimulate and raise the interest and participation in physical education and school sports.
In recent years, the emphasis in schools has been only on academic development, whilst school children of all ages have seen their physical education and school sports activities reduced to incidental activities, leaving the learners with no outlet for their energy, but more importantly depriving them of the essential development that physical education and sports brings.
Physical activity aids the development of life skills, teamwork, learning how to deal with adversity, social development and interaction, gameplay as well as physical development and acquiring skills that will lead to a healthy lifestyle.

Holistic approach
The workshop’s brief was to find a way in which to roll out the IPESS programme in the coming months across the country and to engage all the stakeholders to participate in sporting and physical educational activities.
After a full day of brainstorming and collaboration, the exciting ideas were worked out.
Ayesha Wentworth from the Ministry of Education said: “The ‘high’ concepts and ideas will be turned into practical and real activities for all the 14 regions. Engaging learners and teachers and other stakeholders to make physical education and school sports an intrinsic part of every Namibian child’s life. Watch this space!”
In the past few weeks, consultations were held in all regions (except Erongo) and on Thursday (9 July) the consultation will be held in the Khomas region.
The regional consultations will give an insight on the situation of physical education and school sports on the grounds. The outcome of theses consultations will form the basis for drafting and implementing the policy.