Maken unveils marks-for-fitness plan

Updated on Aug 31, 2012 01:00 AM IST

Sports minister Ajay Maken today proposed an 'academic reward scheme' depending on a child’s fitness levels in a bid to improve physical activity among children. HT reports.

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Hindustan Times | By, New Delhi

Here’s an incentive to get your child off the computer, and out in the open. If all goes well, soon school students will be marked for physical fitness.

Three weeks after he mentioned this plan in book release function of HT, sports minister Ajay Maken on Thursday released the exposure draft of the National Physical Fitness Programme (NPFP) that is expected to assess and ascertain physical fitness of school children from class V onwards.

“The aim is to bring about a change in attitude not only among the children but general public,” said Maken. He also said he hoped the programme would help groom future sporting stars of India.

According to the proposed draft, the top 10 percentage of gender wise performers shall be given an additional 3% to the marks obtained by him/her in academic disciplines in a given academic year.

Those between top 10 and 20 percentages will get an additional 2.5%, while performers between 20 to 30, 30 to 40 and 40 to 50 percentages will get an additional 2, 1.5 and 1% respectively.

Students will be evaluated on six parameters --- cardio respiratory endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, explosive strength and body composition.

For each component, the ministry has proposed a physical test in January and June every year, with a marking scheme so that it can become part of
the school’s yearly academic exercise.

The proposed programme also prescribes a set of exercises to attain different levels of fitness including Surya Namaskara, an exercise adopted in all government schools in Madhya Pradesh.

A uniform assessment card and fitness assessment forms will be prepared by the Lakshmibai National University for Physical Fitness, Gwalior.

The sports ministry also aims to link the fitness programme with the Right To Education Act. The programme still needs the consent of the HRD ministry and state education departments.

The consultations “Schools are already giving grades and marks for sports and fitness under the Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation. I need to go through the draft before commenting on it but we also have to see whether all schools, including government schools, will be able to implement it effectively,” said Usha Ram, principal, Laxman Public School.

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