ATR Extra: 1st ISF U15 World School Sport Games Belgrade 2021 - educational day and “be together” ceremony

The host for the next ISF U15 World School Sport Games in 2023 was also announced.

ISF panel on Sept. 15 (ISF)
ISF panel on Sept. 15 (ISF)

With three days of competition already taking place, with the celebration of IOF International Orienteering Day on September 14, now is the time to celebrate Education Day.

It is a tradition during ISF events to devote a day to educational and cultural activities linked to the values of sport. On September 15, no less than three major events took place. The ISF School Sports Forum, the “be Together” ceremony, and finally the traditional “Nation Night”.

The educational day enabled representatives of the various international sports federations and public authorities to devote their day to school sport by attending the various ceremonies on the program. The most striking announcement for the school sport family is the announcement during the “be Together” ceremony, of the attribution to Brazil of the 2nd edition of the ISF U15 World School Sport Games in 2023. This announcement was made in the presence of the Minister of Sports of Brazil, Mr. Marcelo Magalhaes.

The other significant moment of the day was the signing of a MoU between ISF and FIDE.

Mr. Arkady Dvorkovich, President of FIDE, said that he is extremely excited to develop closer cooperation with the school sport community to bring chess to schools from the grassroot level. This will be accomplished through the ISF online chess championship and to the ISF Multisport Mega-Events as the first ISF U15 WSSG Belgrade 2021.

ISF President Laurent Petrynka said that the great thing about chess is that in every school he goes to in the world there is at least one teacher who is passionate about chess who is ready to develop chess activities for school sport.

The ISF Forum, the main one of which was “School sport: the springboard for a healthy lifestyle” brought together representatives of the International Sports Federations of Olympic Sports and representatives of health institutions in Serbia.

The opening session saw President Petrynka, First Deputy Prime Minister of Serbia and Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development Branko Ruzic and the Minister of Youth and Sports from Serbia, Mr. Vanja Udovičić, taking the floor.

ISF president Laurent Petrynka (ISF)
ISF president Laurent Petrynka (ISF)

The President of the ISF said while welcoming the guests that it is only by cooperating and exchanging methods that young people will best benefit from School Sport. He said it must be the place of discovery, learning and understanding the role of sport for life and the path to organized sport and its values as for many young people, because school is the only place where they practice sport in a structured way this was especially true during the Covid 19 crises as an example.

It is crucial to bring together the most active stakeholders in sport and policymaking during the Forum and to understand how ISF and its partners can contribute to the initiatives of UNESCO, the European Commission or WADA. It is by developing this type of initiative that the ISF will achieve its six major objectives:

·Increase the quantity of physical activities inside the schools

·Strengthen the roles of organised sport and school sport organisation

·Fight the drop-in physical activity

·Spread out the Olympic values through school sport

·Contribute to Gender Equality in Sport

·Cross collaboration among stakeholders for Mega Sport events

The First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education of Serbia, Mr. Branko Ružić underlined the importance of structured school sport for Serbia, declaring: “School sport programs covering all pupils must ensure the promotion of a healthy lifestyle. Such activities enrich the social life of students, develop and maintain friendships.

He points out that school sport in Serbia includes a wide range of activities related to art, cultural and humanitarian programs. Through school sport, we want to develop socialization to have mature people to have valuable citizens,” he said.

Finally, Mr. Vanja Udovičić Minister of Youth and Sports of Serbia stressed that “We do not have a lot of opportunities to meet and talk about important societal issues, and because of this, I am very proud that today in Belgrade we can hold this important forum and talk about the most important topics concerning sport and education for the young.”

UNESCO representative Nancy McLennan, who was the first to introduce the main theme of the Forum, made a presentation entitled: “Delivering results in health, education and equality through sport” by presenting two of UNESCO’s sports programs, “Sport values in every classroom” and “Fit for life”.

She underlined that UNESCO is driven by “quality physical education as the basis of healthy life style “.

In the post-Covid 19 phase and given the results of the UNESCO survey on the impact of Covid 19 on health, she said we must work together so that sport acquires a new place and a new dimension in public policies commensurate with the impact it can have on communities by applying a data-driven approach to deliver quality physical education.

“We need to work together to gather evidence on the role of sport and of quality physical education (QPE) in achieving results in education, health and equality, to advocate for increased and sustainable investment in sport and QPA to accelerate recovery COVID (human, social and economic) and respond to the urgent need for an integrated practice and a common reflection at the political and local levels to amplify the impact, " she said.

She was followed by Ms Florencia Van Houdt, Head of Unit for Sport of European Commission, who draws the same conclusion as the representative of UNESCO, while the European Commission is preparing to launch its new initiative for sport on 23 September,

“#HealthyLifestyle4All”. It aims to contribute encouraging the practice of sport and breaking down barriers preventing the practice of sport and having equitable access to information.

She presented some examples through which the European Commission helps to promote sport. These include items such as increasing Erasmus + opportunities for sport, sharing good practices in sport, opening and maintaining dialogue between sports organizations, the publication of studies on the common interest such as innovation and green deal. She concluded by inviting all stakeholders to join the “#HealthyLifestyle4All” initiative.

The first panel session began with remarks from Ms. Kady Tounkara - Chair of WADA’s Education Committee.

Kady Tounkara - Chair of WADA’s Education Committee (ISF)
Kady Tounkara - Chair of WADA’s Education Committee (ISF)

She initially focused on the stronger educational dimension of WADA as international standards for education were set and WADA partners had to include educational activities in their plans. Secondly, she underlined the prevention approach developed by WADA. Indeed, WADA does not only test, but its action also has a lot to do with prevention as athletes start sport being clean. Finally, she insists on cooperation with the public authorities which manage school programs in order to instill sport values in schools.

What emerges from the speakers of the first-round table entitled “The values of sport in all classes” of the ISF School Sport Forum is that investment in school sport is crucial and that public authorities and sports federations must work more closely together in a spirit of “partnership for goals” (United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 17).

We also noted that the representatives of the international sports federations underlined that approaching school sport has direct consequences, on the adaptation of the equipment (weight of the ball and test policy with “mini-basketball” for FIBA, type of shuttlecock and creation of a new sport “air badminton” for the BWF to play outdoors) and on methods of teaching the sport or investments in school programs.

The representatives of the international sports federations (BWF, FIBA, IJF, UWW) all insist on the fact that the approach must be centered first of all on the pleasure of practicing. This facilitates the learning of fundamental techniques and sporting values but of ‘first children must be happy by playing school sports (“entertrainer” and environment of happiness as a central policy for the IJF or the Wrestle4Fun program for the UWW).

Everyone agrees that playing sport from an early age allows young people to better understand the sporting environment and to get involved longer and to practice sport in the most appropriate way throughout life.

Quotes of the four International Sport Federation of Olympic sport:

Mr. Andreas Zagklis – International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Secretary General:

“Cooperation between ‘school sports federations’ and basketball federations can work wonders when it comes to developing a curriculum on how to teach the fundamentals of each sport for lifelong enjoyment. Basketball initiation and learning programs should be similar in the school environment as in clubs”

Mr. David Cabello – Badminton World Federation Board Member

“The Shuttle Time” Give Every Child the Chance to Play for Life “, the program set up for the schools has become so important that the motto has become the BWF motto as an organisation to spread out our core values: respect, equity and inclusion. This is a major impact for the program dedicated by BWF to school sport and thanks to it we have developed badminton for outdoor”.

Mr. Nicolas Messner - Media Director of the International Judo Federation:

“Sport is not a subject like any other at school. It must be taught differently. The IJF bases its entire school program on fun, which is why teachers are called “entertrainer”. Children want to have fun first and values will develop as they practice. The IJF promotes the learning-by-doing approach.”

Nicolas Messner, IJF Media Director (ISF)
Nicolas Messner, IJF Media Director (ISF)

Mr. Pedro Gama Filho – United World Wrestling Bureau Member

“We wish that through the most natural and one of the oldest sports, young people acquire skills to become champions in their lives. School sport is so important that we have developed programs such as “More than Medals” and “Wrestle4Fun” to better approach athletes in school sport. "

“Healthy Living Habits for Students”

The second panel session devoted to “Healthy Living Habits for Students” focused on the variety of offers and solutions to be offered to young people for extracurricular activities based on the Serbian experience.

The need to extend the process of identifying the most suitable physical activity for everyone so that the person can flourish through physical activity must be linked to broader health policies than those usually mentioned, such as orthopedic deficiencies or even the strengthening of bones and the balance of the body. The desire to play sports should be created by setting clear goals and plans based on individual needs. The reasons why the various partners must engage in this type of broader innovative programs are that school sport is the activity that allows young people to have the most regular sporting activity and that allows them to maintain a good health. This is the fundamental impact of school sport.

The Forum was the opportunity to actions undertaken by France and Ukraine in terms of mega school sport events.

Mr. Karim Herida, Deputy to the interministerial delegate for major sporting events (DIGES), of the French Ministry of Sports, presented the actions around the “Olympic generation Paris 2024” concept as part of the hosting of the 19th ISF Gymnasiade - Normandie 2022. These are being called the “Games before the Games “.

School sport is important because, for 80% of young people, it provides most of the sporting activity. He insists on the dramatic situation of young French teenagers while sedentary lifestyle increases among young people as the abandonment of sports activities, with the formula “the chairs kill”. It is for these reasons that France is hosting the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the ISF - Normandie 2022 Gymnasiade. With the Gymnasiade, it is important to show French youth that the legacy of the Olympic Games is built well in advance with the Gymnasiade.

Arthur Seletskiy, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, under the theme “Physical culture. Healthy generation " present some initiatives that are taken within schools in Ukraine, such as “active breaks” or the introduction of Cool Games activities at national level as well as Esport which must be done in conjunction with physical activities. At the initiative of the ISF with the Universal Teachers Games, we are developing activities dedicated to physical education teachers. Finally, Ukraine wants to host more major international sporting events since 2019.

Presented by International School Sport Federation