Warsaw conference on the Volleyball School Centres programme
The conference brought together the heads of 127 schools and invited guests to discuss the Volleyball School Centres programme aimed at encouraging children to be more physically active. Volleyball was chosen as the pilot sport due to its importance in Poland and its attractiveness to young people.
The Volleyball School Centres’ programme is the first national project of its kind in Poland. It is part of the country’s growth strategy for sport, which works to move financial resources from competitive into general sport. In doing so the aim is to increase the level of sport training in schools.
The programme, a common initiative of the Ministry of Sport and Tourism and the Polish Volleyball Federation, started on September 1, 2012. It currently cover 127 schools in Poland comprising 32 upper secondary and 95 secondary schools and has the cooperation of 207 teachers.
There are currently 32 men’s and women’s Volleyball School Centres each comprising 3 secondary schools and 1 upper secondary school. Of the 3,035 participants, girls are the majority comprising 52% of the total number of students.
Within the framework of the programme, each Volleyball School Centre was supplied with modern training equipment, as well as with salaries for the coaching personnel and competition system between schools qualified to the project. A coordinator was appointed for each province to supervise the project in the area.
To facilitate the work of teachers and coordinators, a special web platform was created (www.mlodziezowasiatkowka.pl), to allow each teacher to follow the consolidated coaching system and exchange experiences. Teachers and coaches can access training plans for each age-group as well as teaching aids.
Thursday’s conference was attended by Mrs Joanna Mucha (Minister of Sport and Tourism), Mr Miroslaw Przedpelski (President of the Polish Volleyball Federation), Mr Waldemar Wspanialy (Project Manager), Mr. Zbigniew Krzyżanowski (Head of Training for the project). Headmasters from the 127 schools participating school were also present at the session.
Minister of Sport and Tourism, Joanna Mucha, underscored the importance of maintaining a balanced training schedule taking into account long-range goals.
During the conference participants got a chance to watch a documentary film about the Volleyball School Centres, which highlighted the cooperation between the Polish Volleyball Federation and schools participating in the project.