Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, the Minister of Education says Physical Education (PE) will be a standalone subject and will be taught practically under the new basic education curriculum to be implemented from September 2019.
He urged school children to take sporting activities seriously; stating that research showed that children who participated in sporting activities were less likely to drop out of school.
He said taking part in sporting activities required one to be disciplined in tactical, mental and physical aspects, hence to succeed in sports one must have self-restraint, and behave in a controlled and precise manner.
Dr Prempeh made these remarks in a speech read on his behalf during sporting activities of the youth of Ghana and France.
The sporting programme dubbed: “Youth, Environment, Sports and Solidarity” (YESS) project was organised by the French Embassy, and aimed at strengthening links between the youths of the two countries.
The maiden edition, which took place at the Athletic Oval of the University of Ghana,registered about 150 children.
It was also aimed at developing awareness on environment.
YESS 2019 witnessed activities such as aerobics and flash mob; different sport events (badminton, table tennis, soccer, relay, tug-of-peace); quiz on environment; and site cleaning.
Dr Prempeh said one of the most important global issues was environmental protection and awareness.
He said in Ghana, issues such as deforestation, coastal and marine resource degradation, destruction of bio-diversity, climate variability, pollution, sanitation and illegal mining were all important issues that continued to engage citizens’ attention.
“I believe it is important to create such awareness in students at a very young age so that it stays with them throughout their adult lives and help to create a society that is environmentally aware”, he added.
The Minister pointed out that if educating children was to have any meaning for a successful society, then it must also inculcate important values of citizenship.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency, Madam Anne Sophie Avè, the French Ambassador to Ghana, said the idea of YESS sports initiative came into being, when the French President came to Ghana, and then went to Burkina Faso, during which he made a speech in Ouagadougou, underscoring the need to engage the youth in sports activities as well as highlighting the need to protect the environment.
She said however, being in Ghana where the youth was one of biggest treasure and sports was also a national activity, they thought of the need to engage young students between ages of eight and twelve; about the environment.
Madam Avè, who said with regards to the objectives of YESS 2019, her team had an idea of alerting the children against littering the environment; and the YESS project touched on solidarity as sports was about team work.
“This is the maiden edition and it is a great success; and we hope to host every year”, she added.