Minister of Youth, Family and Sports, Stephen Lashley, addressing the large crowd in attendance at NAPSAC 2010 at the National Stadium today.??(Image: C. Pitt/BGIS)

An increasing number of primary school children are keen to participate in track and field events, thanks to the recent successes of Ambassador Ryan Brathwaite.

This revelation has come from Acting Chief Education Officer, Laurie King, who told a packed National Stadium today at the opening of the National Primary Schools’

Athletics Championships (NAPSAC) that the Physical Education (PE) teachers were reporting this renewed interest in sports.

Mr. King called on parents to encourage their children to "get active" and become more involved in physical activity. He further advised them to desist from writing notes to teachers asking that their offspring be excused from participating in physical education.

During his remarks, Minister of Youth, Family and Sports, Stephen Lashley, said some of the objectives of NAPSAC were being realised, since children now had an opportunity to participate in a professionally-organised meet.

"Another objective of this meet is the exposure of our juniors to a high quality of competition, thus enabling the identification of those with talent that can be further developed for regional and international competitions.

"We have certainly realised this objective, as we have witnessed numerous outstanding performances by our juniors over the past week. This speaks volumes about the efforts of our coaches at the National Sports Council, who have been unrelenting in their efforts to assist our primary schools and the nation’s youth," Mr. Lashley stated.

He promised that his Ministry, through the programme of assistance to emerging athletes, would continue to nurture this talent and he expressed the hope that some of the young athletes would qualify for the 2016 Olympics.

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