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Linking Young Minds Together
    Volume 5 | Issue 40| October 16, 2011 |


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After Class

A Refreshing Change for Students at the Sunnydale Games

Naimul Karim

"It doesn't matter whether you win or lose, what counts is your effort on the field and your ability to accept the final result with grace; a quality that we lack at the political front of our country,” said Brigadier General (retd) M Shakhawat Hossain, at the inauguration of the 'Sunnydale Games' at Mohammadpur Physical College Ground on October 5, 2011.

The Inter-School competition, hosted by Sunnydale School, saw seventeen institutes from the city participate in six different sporting events, distributed over a period of six days. “This is the first time that an inter-school tournament is taking place with the participation of so many different schools,” explained Sayeed Ahmed, Official Secretary of the competition. “Our motive is to improve the standard of sports at the school level and encourage students to take sports as a possible career option,” he added.


The excitement on the competition ground was evident as students defied the scorching heat to compete against one another. From emphatic celebrations to the deafening tones of victory-chants, the competitive spirit amongst the students created a vibrant atmosphere. “Such tournaments provide a good break from studying or going to coaching classes; besides they instill a sense of urgency within us which keeps us active,” explains Sehtab Sarover, a 12th grade student from Sunnydale School.

“I personally feel that kids hardly find the time to go out and play nowadays. They are either stuck at coaching classes or busy with their computers,” explained Ahmed. “We believe, through this tournament, students will get to know the importance of sports and physical training in the school curriculum,” he said. Ahmed, a member of the Rugby Federation, hopes to discover young talent from the tournament and convince the respective sporting federations to train them.

In order to increase the involvement of students from different grades, the tournament set various limits for the team events. For instance, while the senior most students of the schools were allowed to participate in the seven-a-side football competition, the basketball tournament allowed the participation of boys and girls up to grade six and grade eight respectively.


Although the various limits were set with an intention to encourage participation, they, however, created a mixed response from some of the parents of the students. “I personally feel dividing the students according to their ages would have been a better choice. Some of the students are older than their class mates and have an undue advantage while playing,” commented Feroza Akhtar, parent of a student studying in Scholastica. Majority of the students however, seemed content with the rules and regulations. “It really doesn't matter as to how old a student is, because I think most of us are of the same age. As long as all the students are registered under their schools, there shouldn't be a problem,” said Sakib Hossain, an 11th grade student from Sunnydale School. Also to ensure a fair competition, the organising committee hired professional referees from different sporting federations.

The rapid increase in practice of English-medium students opting out of school to attend coaching classes, has been a major concern for the educational sector of the country. By organising an Inter-School competition, the Sunnydale games have re-ignited the importance of the non-academic aspect of the school culture, an important factor that many parents and students tend to overlook. The platform created by Sunnydale School will surely inspire other institutions to organise more Inter-School competitions to promote the importance of sports and other co-curricular activities.


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