PASIG CITY, July 18, 2018 – The Department of Education (DepEd), in partnership with the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC), held a pre-departure orientation and pep rally for the student-athletes who will serve as the country’s delegation to the 10th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Schools Games (ASG), on July 14, 2018 at the Bulwagan ng Karanungan in DepEd Central Office, Pasig City.
The orientation aimed to brief the student-athletes in preparation for their participation in the 10th ASG which will be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from July 19 to 26, 2018, through an overview of the annual games, discussion of house rules and agreements, and provision of general information about Malaysia. The student-athletes will compete in the following sporting events: athletics, badminton, basketball, gymnastics, sepak takraw, swimming, table tennis, volleyball, and squash.
DepEd Assistant Secretary and Palarong Pambansa Secretary-General Revsee A. Escobedo addressed the 228-strong delegation: “Sa pagsuot ng uniporme, nandiyan po nakatatak ang bandila ng Pilipinas. Nire-represent ninyo ang Pilipinas, hindi lamang ang inyong pamilya, ang inyong kamag-anak, kundi tayo, kami, lahat ng mamamayang Pilipino.”
Undersecretary Tonisito M.C. Umali Esq., Head of Delegation and representative of DepEd Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones to the ASEAN Schools Sports Council (ASCC), pointed out that more than winning medals, it is equally important to know why they are joining ASG.
“Una, to promote ASEAN solidarity through sports. Number two, it’s an opportunity for us to show our talents – benchmark with other countries, malaman natin kung gaano na ba kagagaling itong ibang bansa na kasama natin sa ASEAN. Tayo ba ay may ginagawa na palagay ba natin ay dapat nating paghusayin para malaman natin kung tayo ay kapantay o humihigit na ba tayo sa kanila? Pangatlo, promote cultural exchange,” Umali underscored.
He also shared that before the implementation of K to 12, only student-athletes aged 16 years old and below under the basic education were allowed to join ASG.
PSC Commissioner Raymond Maxey added, “Not everyone is given the chance to compete for your country. Now that you’re part of the Philippine team for this 10th ASEAN Schools Games, make the most out of it. I encourage you to do your best, represent your country in this international competition.”
The commissioner further shared that PSC will always support every endeavor of DepEd, especially the Palarong Pambansa, in which medalists are given the opportunity to join the ASG. PSC also gave the student-athletes track suits, training shirts, and luggage – similar luggage that will be used by the national athletes to the Asian Games in August.
In addition, partners and stakeholders, such as MILO-Nestle Philippines provided MILO stocks, training shirts, and jackets for the student-athletes, and shirts and jackets for the officials, which they will wear at the opening ceremony of the 10th ASG.
The Philippine delegation also composed their official sports yell, “Team Pilipinas – Pilipinas, Puso,” during the orientation. The officials further announced that the Philippines will host the ASG in 2020. The Philippines last hosted ASG in 2014 wherein it won the most number of medals since joining the annual games.
Also present in the event were Chef de Mission and Bureau of Learner Support Services Director Rizalino Jose Rosales, and Deputy Chef de Mission and School Sports Division Chief Cesar Abalon.