Education Ministry open to ten-school chess pilot project

Minister of Education Dr Rupert Roopnaraine (third, right) with some officials of the Guyana Chess Federation (GCF) and three students of St Stanislaus College in his Brickdam office on Wednesday. The students are displaying certificates of completion of a chess training programme which was organized by the GCF. From left are: National Chess Champion Wendell Meusa, GCF President James Bond, Jaden Taylor, Ghansham Allijohn, Jessica Callender, Minister Roopnaraine, Vice President of the GCF Frankie Farley and honorary member of the GCF Errol Tiwari.

On Wednesday, the Guyana Chess Federation (GCF) met with Minister of Education Dr Rupert Roopnaraine in his Brickdam office to press for the introduction of chess into the school system. President of the GCF James Bond torpedoed the deceptive misconceptions surrounding the ancient pastime, and purposefully mounted a small team seeking to influence the minister in the direction of allowing chess to be played in schools. Bond argued the world has grown more aware and more certain of the incalculable benefits of chess in schools. He suggested a ten-school pilot project as an initial experiment; the Ministry of Education would determine which ten schools would be used.

Minister of Education Dr Rupert Roopnaraine (third, right) with some officials of the Guyana Chess Federation (GCF) and three students of St Stanislaus College in his Brickdam office on Wednesday. The students are displaying certificates of completion of a chess training programme which was organized by the GCF. From left are: National Chess Champion Wendell Meusa, GCF President James Bond, Jaden Taylor, Ghansham Allijohn, Jessica Callender, Minister Roopnaraine, Vice President of the GCF Frankie Farley and honorary member of the GCF Errol Tiwari.

Minister Roopnaraine supported the plan and noted that since other disciplines were already incorporated into the school system, it would not be tedious to try the novel chess experiment. The minister knows the game of chess, and, perhaps, was stirred by the GCF’s demarche, and the outlook for its introduction into schools. In an aside, Dr Roopnaraine explained he played cricket at Queen’s College much to the disadvantage of chess. Luckily, in his current position, he has the opportunity to make amends for his chess default by currently viewing the royal game with favour. The column gives credit to Bond for his energy and his individual initiative in bringing the concept to the fore. It believes the said concept will impact widely on the school population allowing them to have an alternative in hand which would allow competitors to sit and think, and to make plans for the future, whether on the chessboard, or in life. The column debunks the argument that since Bond operates at the helm of the GCF, he is quite expected to make chess appear in the schools. No! Others have tried and failed. It is a process that may be dotted with misadventures, like the time I approached a secondary school hoping to share my knowledge of the game; the headmistress confidently informed me she wanted no gambling and draughts played in her school and subsequently refused me an audience.

Bond’s initiative is exemplary and has paved the way for making chess a pleasant and fulfilling adventure.

The GCF succeeded in negotiating a permanent location for playing chess at the National Resource Centre in Woolford Avenue from the ministry. The playing area, notably a room, would be named the Maurice Broomes Chess Centre, after Guyana’s strongest and most successful chess player.

The column wishes to acknowledge the efforts of Minister in the Ministry of Education Nicolette Henry and Director of Sport Christopher Jones for making such a facility available to chess players. Again this was a Bond initiative.  For persons who anticipate chess competitions, work is ongoing for a complete tournament timetable for this year. Competitors would be able to plan their tournament schedules and decide which competitions would be convenient for them to enter. Each competition has to be sponsored and that may be the reason for the delay in the completion of the schedule. Meanwhile, a children’s chess tournament is to be held this week at the National Library. However, date and time were not transmitted to me at the time of writing.

Bond has demonstrated in superlative style an ability to extract, as in chess, the most from a position that was lacking in content and promise. Such high resolve to perform should be commended.

 

Comments  

Grandmasters battle for places in Candidates Tournament

One of the selected aspirations of a chess grandmaster is to become a world chess champion.

By ,

A look back at the Fischer, Spassky championship match

You explain deep mysteries, because even the dark is light to you. – Daniel: 2:22 It was 45 years ago, that American Bobby Fischer, challenged Boris Spassky of the then Soviet Union, for the world chess championship title; today that story is still being repeated, analyzed and debated.

By ,

Who will be India’s 50th grandmaster?

In his largely entertaining and insightful book,  Grandmasters of Chess Pulitzer prize winner and music critic/chess correspondent for the New York Times, Harold C Schonberg, tells us about the origin of the word grandmaster.

By ,

Constant practice necessary for success in competitive chess

In 2005 when he retired from active competition, Russian Grandmaster and World Chess Champion Garry Kasparov was the highest-ranked player in the world.

By ,

Kasparov rises and falls

  At the St Louis Rapid and Blitz Tournament the chess world eagerly awaited the re-emergence of the former 13th world champion from Russia, Garry Kasparov.

By ,

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly.

We built stabroeknews.com using new technology. This makes our website faster, more feature rich and easier to use for 95% of our readers.
Unfortunately, your browser does not support some of these technologies. Click the button below and choose a modern browser to receive our intended user experience.

Update my browser now

×