PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, August 26, 2019 – Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones underscored the need to establish sports as a profession when she delivered an inspirational message in the opening ceremonies of the Batang Pinoy 2019 national championships held yesterday at Raul V. Mitra Complex in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan.
Citing the small percentage of learners who choose sports as a Senior High School track, the Education chief expressed the Department’s desire to train professionally both coaches and athletes.
“You can look forward to the time when talagang mag-specialize kayo sa sports, magkaroon kayo ng degree. At darating ang panahon na madagdagan ang ating mga sports champions at sports heroes, hindi lamang sa ating bansa, kundi sa Asian region, at sa buong mundo,” Briones shared.
She further revealed the Philippine Sports Commission’s (PSC) plan to build the Philippine Sports Academy through the initiative of its Chairperson William Ramirez.
“Ang sports ay hindi lamang physical, kundi strategic. It takes a lot of planning, and it’s also very scientific,” Briones added.
Also known as the Philippine Youth Games, Batang Pinoy 2019 gathered approximately 10,000 delegates, representing some 200 local government units from all over the country, who will take part in 31 sporting activities. Participants also include out-of-school youth.
Culture, history, inclusivity
The Education chief likewise encouraged all delegates to make new friends and meet people from other regions: “This is a time not only to learn about sports but as you know, you are learning our history and culture.”
Briones also gave special mention to the delegation from the Municipality of Talaingod in Davao del Norte.
“Kung nakarating kayo dito sa Puerto Princesa, nakarating din ako sa Talaingod, sa pinakamalayo ninyong bundok,” Briones said, referring to her visit some weeks back when she talked to the founder and leader of the Salugpongan Ta’ Tanu Igkanogon Community Learning Center, Inc. about the situation of learners in their locality.
Talaingod’s delegation from Sto. Niño National High School will compete in volleyball–girls’ category. The team’s coach, Bobby Sinco, acknowledged the all-out support of DepEd and the LGU.
“I’m very happy. It is a very powerful indication that the children of Talaingod are involved even in national activities,” the Secretary concluded.
Also present in the event were Sen. Christopher Lawrence Go, who delivered the keynote address; PSC Chairperson Ramirez; Puerto Princesa City Mayor Lucilo Bayron; Palawan Provincial Governor Jose Chaves Alvarez; and DepEd MIMAROPA Director Benjamin Paragas.