New Directions Education has helped to support a group of Penarth schools to host their very own Olympic Opening Ceremony. Wales’ premier recruitment and training agency for the education sector sponsored the schools t-shirts for the high-profile event.
The ceremony attended by 11 schools from Penarth including Albert Primary, Victoria Primary, Sully Primary, Ysgol Pen-y-garth, Fairfield Primary, Murch Primary, St Joseph’s Primary, Cogan Primary, Llandough Primary, Dinas Powys Infants and was hosted by Evenlode Primary School.
Opening the ceremony Steve Rees, head teacher at Evenlode thanked everyone for their attendance, including Tanni Grey-Thompson – 16 time Olympic medal winner and Penarth Town Mayor Anthony Earnest.
Mr Rees commented: ‘Each class at Evenlode has been learning about a different aspect of the Olympics. We even have a couple of hopefuls for the 2020 Olympics here at the school including Rhys and Alex Lewis, brothers who are Wales’ top sailing and tennis champions respectively and Joshua Cook who is the current under 12 Welsh gymnastic champion.’
The event ran from 9.00am with Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson giving a talk at an assembly, where she revealed she keeps her Olympic medals in a bag by the washing machine at home.
Each school then began a set of rotations competing with each other in some rather non-conventional Olympic games. The day celebrated the spirit of the Paralympic participation and children took part in sitting volleyball, wheelchair rugby and blind partner relay.
The day came to a close at 3.00pm where the ‘torch’ was passed to Sully Primary School – the next to host an Olympic event.
Speaking at the event, Howard Burge, Regional Manager for New Directions said: ‘We are truly overwhelmed to be a part of this very special day. Helping Welsh school children to celebrate and even aspire to be a part of the 2020 Olympics is fantastic.’
Wales has a real participation in the 2012 Olympics. Not only will the first event take place in Cardiff with the women’s football kicking off at the Millennium Stadium, the medals for the event are being made at the Royal Mint in Llantrisant.
New Directions also has further involvement with the 2012 games. Group Learning and Development Manager, Victoria Deane is part of the World Host team to deliver customer service training to the Olympic camp volunteers across Wales.