Speech by Mr Raymond H C Wong, JP
Permanent Secretary for Education, HKSAR
Hong Kong Schools Sports Federation
Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Secondary Schools Regional Committee
Division I, Inter-School Swimming Championships
on Wednesday, 28 October 2009
Mrs Lau, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls,
I am delighted to be here today to witness the outstanding performance of our student athletes and the successful staging of the 2009-2010 Inter-School Swimming Championships by the Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Secondary Schools Regional Committee.
I would like to start by congratulating all the boys and girls who have demonstrated excellence and sportsmanship in swimming. As we are all aware, swimming is the best all-round sport for health and one of the most popular sporting activities. Whilst regular swimming builds endurance, muscular strength and flexibility, it is also a good way to dig up the fine elements of our inner quality, such as self-discipline, tolerance, resilience and positive thinking. In the arena of swimming as well as other sports, we do not always win, nor do we accede to eternal failure. No matter how, one should win with grace and lose with dignity.
School education is not confined to numeracy, literacy and other academic undertaking. It bears a much broader meaning as we are nurturing our students to be healthy individuals, lifelong learners and globalised citizens. Against this backdrop, physical education (PE) is well positioned in the basic education as well as the new senior secondary curriculum introduced this school year. In particular, physical development is one of the Other Learning Experiences at senior secondary, and PE is an elective subject accepted by universities as part of their admission criteria. I am confident that by assuming an active and participative role in PE, students will become “physically educated persons”, who participate in sports regularly, enjoy physical activities and appreciate their contributions to an active and healthy lifestyle. I therefore appeal to all of you to keep doing exercise and acting as role models for your peers and family.
I am most impressed by the remarkable achievements of our students in the 1st Asian Youth Games and the 10th All China Secondary School Students Games which were held last summer. As some of you will represent Hong Kong in the Hong Kong 2009 East Asian Games this December, I wish to take this opportunity to wish you every success in this important sporting event.
Lastly, my hearty gratitude goes to all the teachers of the participating schools and members of the Regional Committee for their dedication and commitment in providing quality physical activities for students. Under the leadership of the Executive Committee, I am sure the work of the Regional Committee will continue to prosper from strength to strength.