Thursday, February 19, 2009


Problems in physical education and sports have been highlighted at many workshops and seminars by concerned professionals and parents. Many schools just do not implement the physical education requirement.

The only activity children get at the co-curricular sports programme is to sign the attendance book. The Ministry of Education has to implement a better system of monitoring and assisting schools, so that children receive the kind of balanced education that is so strongly emphasized in our philosophy of education.

The Ministry of Education has to seriously think over the issue of ‘time’ given to physical education. The amount of time they give to physical education is related to their value and priorities in their educational philosophy for Malaysia.

Our primary school children, especially during the first 3 to 4 years, need daily physical activity/physical education. This is so essential for their physical, mental and emotional growth. For the rest of our school-going children and youths, they need a minimum of 3 sessions a week of aerobic activity for 20 – 40 minutes per session. Our schools must make a serious effort to provide this.

Since Merdeka, sedentary lifestyles have increased and this situation is getting worse. Malaysians were told about the youths in the out-of-school situation, and the many ill effects of our economic success was having on them. This was the rationale of the Rakan Muda Programme.

Often heard these days are the emphasis of computers and information technology in schools, leading them to be more sedentary. Young people are getting more sedentary, putting on more weight, unfit, less active and having less energy to achieve individual and national goals. They are neglecting the most basic and essential foundation for life and active living.

Measures to expand on the vital role of physical education and sports in schools need to be taken by the Education Ministry: Some of the measures are :

- increasing the number of physical education periods per week to 3 times.

- ensuring that physical education is taught by suitably qualified teachers or sportsmasters.

- integrating physical education within the core curriculum as a subject for examination at the secondary level.

- continuing to promote competitive sports while developing opportunities for physical recreational pursuits
forming effective links with local sports clubs/associations for sporting opportunities to bridge the gap and increasing the participation by school levers.
- ensuring 2 mandatory sports be compelled on each primary and secondary student consisting of either running and swimming or any other Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) endorsed sport.