According to a report in The New Paper today (27 December 2008), the Ministry of Education has revealed that the two competitions – the biggest and most glamorous of all the national inter-school championships – will be held in May next year.
This is to accommodate both the Asian Youth Games (AYG), which Singapore will host in July, and the Asean Schools Games which will be held in Thailand after that.
In fact, almost all national school tournaments – both at zonal and divisional level – will be over by May, said the MOE.
The only sports that will continue to have their competitions in July are judo and C Division hockey, rugby, basketball and football.
“To facilitate our student athletes’ participation in the AYG, the Singapore Schools Sports Council (SSSC) has made adjustments to the school sporting calendar in 2009,” said an MOE spokesman to The New Paper.
“All inter-school sporting competitions, including zonal and national competitions for the A, B and C Divisions, under the purview of SSSC, will be held from January to May in 2009 instead of the usual period of January to July.”
The decision to bring forward the tournaments was made in consultation with school principals, heads of departments and teachers.
Whle the MOE said the schools welcome and support the change, the shift of the National Schools Track and Field and Swimming Championships could affect the preparations of top athletes and swimmers and in turn, their ability to set new records at both competitions.
This year, a whopping 23 new records were set at the National Schools Track and Field Champonships while 15 new marks were recorded at the National Schools Swimming Championships.
Yours in sport
Singapore Sports Fan