A high-energy taekwondo display and a hard-fought softball match were the highlights of the National School Games opening ceremony on 1 February 2010 at Raffles Institution. For the first time in the 51-year history of the Schools National Championships, an opening ceremony was held to mark the occasion as well as the change of name to National School Games.
Ms Grace Fu, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of National Development and Ministry of Education, was the guest of honour and threw the opening pitch for the opening match of softball between Raffles Institution and Hwa Chong Institution. In her speech, she announced the setting up of Youth Sports Academies to provide centralised training for athletes who are in secondary school, junior college or the centralised institute. The first three academies to be set up in March 2010 are in badminton (Bedok View Secondary School), wushu (Meridian Junior College) and table tennis (MOE CCA branch).
This photo essay brings you the highlights of the National School Games opening ceremony.
The National School Games opening ceremony started with a special display by students from the Singapore Taekwondo Federation. This year marks the first time that taekwondo is a sport recognised in the National School Games.
Taekwondo athletes demonstrated their grace and prowess as they broke wooden blocks and executed stunning cartwheels and other movements. The display group comprised students from Pri 4 up to those who are in ITE or polytechnics.
These taekwondo athletes train twice a week with Mr Tan Cheng Hui, chairman of the demonstration team for the Singapore Taekwondo Federation. As they come from different schools, sometimes their training takes place at night, with the older students guiding the younger ones.
Some of the more experienced taekwondo athletes in the display team have represented Singapore at the World Taekwondo Festival in Korea, where they were placed third overall in the demonstration team event.
With a flourish, Senior Minister of State Grace Fu (in orange shirt) and other distinguished guests “lit” the National School Games torch on the website of the Singapore Schools Sports Council. It will “burn” on the homepage for 211 days, until the end of the Games on 17 September 2010.