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"Junior Division Review will give students the motivation to improve and continue the sport.” - NYSI


Baranee Kumar, NYSI Performance Pathways Executive, speaking on Vasantham News. (Photo: Screenshot of Vasantham News)

Primary 3 to 5 student-athletes aged 9-11 will soon see changes in the format of their favourite sports. For example, instead of the usual 5v5 basketball format, they will play 3v3 basketball on a half-court. In floorball, the previous 6v6 format will be replaced with a 3v3 version with no goalkeeper and 2 goalposts per side.

These are some of the enhancements that the Ministry of Education (MOE) will implement after their Junior Division Review in 2018. The aim of the review was to strengthen the long-term development and sustained participation of primary school student-athletes. 

Baranee Kumar, NYSI Performance Pathways Executive, spoke to Vasantham News on 24th January 2019 about the changes. 

Click here to read more about the Junior Division Review.

Click here to watch the original news clip.

Below is a transcript of the news report that aired on 24th January 2019:

News reader: Students are enthusiastic and elated with the modifications made to the Junior Division of the National School Games. The Ministry of Education announced these changes yesterday, aiming to increase student interest and participation in sport. 

Reporter: Some of these modifications include changes in rules and age restrictions amongst the divisions. It will also offer more opportunities for students aged 9 to 11, to participate in competitions.

Student 1: I have been playing Basketball for 2 years. Previously, we used play on the whole court. Now, we only use half the court. Also, the team sizes have reduced from 5 members to 3 members. This allows more space for us to move around on the court and also gives each member a better opportunity to participate during the game. 

Student 2: I have been taking part in Track & Field for one year. I feel happy because I enjoy the new multi-skill format of the sport. 

Reporter: It’s a common opinion that competition formats should change in accordance with the students’ ages. 

Baranee Kumar: As the students participate in game formats that build up toward the adult format, they will be enthusiastic to continue participating in the games and competitions. If they start their sporting journey competing in the adult format of the game, they might find it too challenging and might even drop out if they do not perform well. This will affect the long term participation of sport amongst these students. However, with these new modifications, the game difficulty will increase step by step, allowing students to do well and give a sense of achievement. This will give students the motivation improve and continue the sport.

Reporter: It is believed that some of the changes that are being made will help to hone the student’s skills. It will also encourage them to develop holistically. 

Baranee Kumar: When the student participates in the modified games, the games will lay the foundation for the students to perform better. This will provide encouragement and enjoyment to participate in these sports. The games also allow them to interact with fellow students, thus allowing them to develop in the social aspect too. 

Reporter: The National School Games are usually held from January to August, every year. It is expected that around 58,000 students will participate in more than 400 games.