Minister for Education, Hon. Dr Mahendra Reddy with participants at the Technical Working Group Quality Physical Education Training Workshop in Lami yesterday. Photo: DEPTFO.
Physical education teachers and other key education stakeholders are meeting in Suva to deliberate on a Quality Physical Education Policy aimed at strengthening fitness and wellness amongst Fijian children.
Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts Hon. Dr Mahendra Reddy, while opening the Technical Working Group Quality Physical Education training workshop today, said it was timely considering the National Sports and Wellness Day this Friday.
Minister Reddy said their objective was to place children at the center of learning and contribute to their holistic development spiritually, intellectually, culturally, socially, emotionally, aesthetically and physically.
“Physical education supports the healthy living of children. Our children all over the world are falling prey to junk food and poor eating and lifestyle habits which are affecting their growth and development,” Minister Reddy said.
“The high number of NCDs affecting children nowadays is a testimony of this growing worry. However, exercise and physical training has been always promoted as a solution to fight these NCDs.
“When we have quality physical education programmes in schools, there is no doubt that students’ health will be enhanced further and healthier lifestyles will be adopted.”
Minister Reddy said physical education in schools was the stepping stone for many sportspeople who are gracing world fame and glory.
He called on teachers to inculcate a culture of physical fitness in children.
“This week we launched the 2017 Drugs and Illicit Trafficking Campaign for all schools where I reiterated that children should be monitored, supervised, supported and guided to make the right choices so that they stay away from such harm,” Minister Reddy said.
UNESCO national expert coordinator, Margaret Eastgate said they were focused on ensuring that physical education was prioritised in schools from primary level.