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Local Youth Sports get more Airtime in Singapore


Singaporeans can expect more updates on the local youth sports scene right from their television screens with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Singapore Sports Council (SSC), the Ministry of Education (MOE) and MediaCorp today at the Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus (CHIJ) Secondary (Toa Payoh). This collaboration between the Singapore Sports Council, Ministry of Education and MediaCorp aims to build a strong sporting culture through wider exposure of youth sports and to give budding athletes support and encouragement.

The MOU was signed by Mr Oon Jin Teik, Chief Executive Officer for the Singapore Sports Council, Ms Sum Chee Wah, Director (Education Programmes) from the Ministry of Education and Mr Kenneth Liang, Executive Vice President, TV Programming and Production, Channel 5, MediaCorp TV Singapore Pte Ltd. Mr Teo Ser Luck, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Community Development, Youth & Sports and Ministry of Transport, Mr Masagos Zulkifli BMM, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Home Affairs, and Mr Lucas Chow, Chief Executive Officer of MediaCorp Pte Ltd witnessed the official signing ceremony.

Under the agreement, MediaCorp will broadcast highlights from the National School Sports Championships 2009 covering almost all of the 26 sports contested in the three age divisions in secondary schools and junior colleges from the quarter-finals onwards. The weekly 30-minute prime-time magazine show will include a summary of what has gone on in the week before as well as interviews and results of the various competitions. The 13-episode programme will air on MediaCorp Channel 5 from 4 March every Wednesday from 7:30pm - 8:00pm and is expected to wrap up in May when the competitions draw to a close. There will also be regular updates on the other MediaCorp platforms in print, radio and online.

The National School Sports Championships is a prominent fixture among the schools with more than 55,000 students taking part on an annual basis.

Ms Sum Chee Wah, MOE's Director of Education Programmes, says, "MOE is delighted that the vibrant and exciting inter-school competitions will be captured and broadcast to a national audience. There are 26 sports competing in the National School Sports Championships and the school sports competitions are currently the most structured and extensive local platform for youth sports exposure and talent development. This is a wonderful platform to showcase the sporting talents in our schools and a useful vehicle for building a strong sporting culture among our youths."

The timing of the project is most opportune as the nation gears up for the hosting of the inaugural Asian Youth Games 2009 and Youth Olympic Games 2010 in Singapore. The broadcast of the weekly sports programme will be the perfect platform for the Singapore Sports Council to further increase the awareness of sports among the public ahead of both major sporting events.

"This collaboration is a significant milestone in SSC's masterplan to develop a vibrant sports culture and grow the sports media sector in Singapore," says Mr Oon Jin Teik, Chief Executive Officer, Singapore Sports Council. For the first time, the energy, excitement and emotions that are seen at the National School Championships will be presented to a national audience on a regular basis through multi platforms such as television, radio, print and new media. We hope this will rub off on everyone in Singapore and encourage greater sports participation - be it as a participant, spectator, supporter or sponsor - as we ramp up and prepare to host the inaugural Asian Youth Games in 2009 and Youth Olympic Games in 2010. We are very fortunate to be able to work with two great partners to ensure the success of this project."

"MediaCorp is pleased to partner the Singapore Sports Council and the Ministry of Education to give local sports a wider and more prominent exposure to Singapore viewers. For the first time, we are producing a regular series on the national school sports championships. With this programme, we hope to promote greater sporting interest among Singaporeans and to showcase the many and varied talents in our schools today," says Mr Lucas Chow, Chief Executive Officer, MediaCorp.

Filming will begin at the end of February 2009, and the sports to be featured include badminton, swimming, basketball and table tennis.

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