While a majority school ‘sacrifice’ physical training (PT) classes for other subjects, only a few realise the importance of sports for students.
Many physical education teachers hoped that the government will take steps to promote physical education, but in the proposed curriculum too sports has not been given its due share.
Tamil Nadu Physical Education Teacher Physical Director Association has pointed that there are no textbooks for the physical education. “Out of 3,677 high schools in the state, around 400 have physical education directors. There are only 89 posts in physical director grade II level. This has been the situation since 1980s,” says T Devi Selvam, general secretary of the association. The association has also expressed its resentment in its feedback posted on the TNSCERT website. The website has a section ‘Physical and Health Education’ where physical activities for classes 1 to 12 have been discussed. Different methods like polymetric, competitive and trial method circuit training have been included. Yoga has also been made part of the PT schedule. “However, there is no clarity about the textbook. Physical Education also needs a textbook and should be treated on par with other important subjects. We have written to the committee for the need of strong textbook with stories of top sportsmen to motivate the children,” said Devi Selvam.
S Prakash, a PT teacher in a government school, while opining that the intention of the government as right, cautioned that the implementation part would be a challenge. “Right before the board exam, the core subject teachers encroach upon PT classes. The problem of students, who will be under pressure due to their tight exam preparation schedule, will only be aggravated if the sports classes are taken away. The government should make a sensible approach in giving due importance to sports in schools. Identifying and promoting young talent can only help raise the status of the country in global sports arena.”