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Friday, January 15, 2010

Budget slash a setback for development of chess in Malaysian schools.

Budget slash a setback for development of chess in schools.

Written

By QUAH SENG SUN

"SO it happens yet again. The rumour that I have been hearing for the past few months has been confirmed. Chess is out from this year’s national schools’ sports programme, a victim of the drastic cost-cutting measures by the Education Ministry."

"According to a news report last week, the ministry had slashed its annual grant to the Malaysian Schools Sports Council (MSSM) from RM6mil to a measly RM1.5mil. As a result, the MSSM is forced to reduce the number of sports in its calendar from 24 to 13."

"Of course, I’m disappointed with the consequences of the budget slash. Who wouldn’t be? A student’s all-round education should encompass both academic and non-academic activities."

"While emphasis should rightly focus on academic results, non-academic activities should not be overlooked. This nation is not built on bookworms alone.
So chess is one of the sports affected. There won’t be an MSSM chess tournament at the national level this year. No doubt, there may still be some school chess tournaments on a state-wide level if the states can find the funds themselves, but without a school competition at national level, it will never be the same.
More than 10 years ago when the country was hit by recession, chess was also a convenient victim. Funds were also withdrawn from chess at the MSSM and it was only many years later that the game was re-instated into the programme."

"In the process, we lost more than a generation of chess players. The luckier states like Selangor and Penang were able to continue nurturing their young crop of players but in most of the other states, chess development in the schools was practically at a stand-still. These states suffered the most."

"Losing this generation of chess players meant that many of our young citizens never had the opportunity to uncover or develop their full potential. Goodness knows how many of them were wasted."

"Then, when chess was re-introduced into the national sports programme a few years ago, it took a while before the game got back into its natural groove. No doubt, the same thing is going to happen again. There’ll be another generation lost.
The only comfort which chess players can perhaps derive from this setback is that we are not alone. Together with chess, other sports like bowling, squash, archery, table tennis, rugby, cricket, sailing, softball, handball and cross country have been axed from the programme."

"But is this the time for self-pity? No! Not for chess or any of the other games that were taken off the MSSM calendar. If anything, this is the opportunity for the state sport associations and the national sport federations to do something positive on their own to maintain the interest and momentum in the sport they profess to represent."

"If a state education department cannot organise a state-wide school chess competition, come in with your expertise to hold your own state-level age group tournaments. If there is no MSSM competition for your game, the federation should step in to help out with a national age group event."

To read the remainder of this article please click on the following link:

http://thestar.com.my/lifestyle/story.asp?file=/2010/1/15/lifeliving/5464882&sec=lifeliving
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 How tragic for children in Malaysia that funding for chess has been cut back again!

. According to the World Factbook at https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/my.html , 31.4 percent of the population of Malaysia are between the ages of 0-14 (4,153,621` of these children are males and 3,914,962 of these children are females). According to the World Factbook, Malaysia has a Current Account balance of 

$33.76 billion (2008 est.) ( This is the country's net trade in goods and services, plus net earnings from rents, interest, profits, and dividends, and net transfer payments (such as pension funds and worker remittances) to and from the rest of the world during the period specified. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.) They have all this money however no money for chess programs for children,how tragic!!




 





 

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The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.