The government of the State of Osun on Thursday announced that it will institutionalise calisthenics in all public schools in Osun as extracurricular activities in line with the educational intervention of Governor Rauf Aregbesola-led administration.
Director, Department of Social, Grassroots Mobilisation and Guidance, Office of the Governor, Comrade Bayo Ojo, while speaking with journalists at a Training Workshop for Coaches who are teachers in Secondary Schools, held in Osogbo, the State Capital, said calisthenics in public schools has assisted in decimating social menace among school students.
The Calisthenics workshop had in attendance, Permanent Sectary, Ministry of Education, Mr Festus Olaide, Permanent Secretary, Local Government Loans Board Dr Oyeboade Olowogboyega and selected coaches from the 9 federal constituencies in the state.
He said calisthenics has instilled discipline among the 22, 000 students drawn from 50 schools in the two vocal local government s, Osogbo and Olorunda who have being participating in the programme since 2012.
According to him, spreading the benefit of calisthenics on volunteering basis is among others to encourage school children to be physically strong, mentally sound, skillful, knowledgeable and socially oriented.
Ojo said “calisthenics are exercise that consists varieties of rhythmic movements with different formations and compositions, every participants are important to the success of the display which involved competence in coordination and management of complex situations.
“Worthwhile training in the process is unity of purpose that compels participants to work towards a single objective, cooperation and team work that allows the participants learn to work in concert realising that each must play his or her own parts well in time, as each part, big or small, is equally important in attaining the set goals.”
He explained that organisaisation , discipline and collective responsibilities involved in calisthenics are core values missing in the Nigeria that has derailed the desired development in the country arguing that if the young generation imbibed such values, Nigeria can be sure of better future.
To bring the game wider to the grassroots, the state government is introducing selected schools as training centres in the 9 federal constituencies and allow schools to take ownership of the programme as extracurricular activities.
Students from the public and interested private schools in the state will constitute the calisthenics team of between 1,000 and 1,500 students that will participate in the state wide competition with trophy and financial rewards for the winners.