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Chess in Schools – Australia
Friday, 23 December 2011 20:35

Graeme Gardiner (www.gardinerchess.com) has, at our request, sent us an overview of Chess in Schools ‘Down Under’. Zone President Brian Jones provided some additional links.

aus_chessactivityIn Australia, it appears to me that the governing body, the Australian Chess Federation, is happy to administer chess in Australia, and also happy to leave the development of chess to the commercial organisations. Historically, chess in schools in Australia was largely dependent upon the odd volunteer parent or teacher. A school might have a great programme for a period whilst the volunteer was involved, but as soon as they went, the programme invariably collapsed. Since 1995 a whole group of commercial organizations have evolved. As commercial organisations have a vested interest, chess in schools is going to continue to grow well into the future.

There is some sign that the Australian Chess Federation, through its state affiliates, is able to benefit to some degree through working with the commercial organisations. The Australian Chess Federation has an official inter-schools competition, with each state holding a series of regional competitions, state finals, each providing a state winner to compete at the national finals. Some commercial organisations like to compete with this and hold their own comps, and others pay a licence fee for the right to run the official qualifying competitions.

Around Australia there are approximately 10,000 schools, and in the main population areas I suspect that there is a similar level of market penetration. I suspect that there is some kids of regular chess coaching programme in around 600-1,000 schools in Australia. In Queensland there are approximately 2,000 schools, and Gardiner Chess provide ongoing chess coaching services each week in around 120 of them.

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WEchess Jamaica
Sunday, 11 December 2011 16:26
Five years ago, FM Warren Elliott approached VAZ Preparatory School with a project for teaching chess in school. Since then, with help from the Ministry of Education, his project has become part of the curriculum in quite a few schools in Jamaica. There are theory and practical classes, and an exam each term, the results of which are included in the termly report and count for grades.

Our thanks to Development Commission Chairman Allan Herbert for this). 

Click on the photo to watch the video.

wechess
 
Mikhail Gorbachev, Patron of FIDE Chess in School
Tuesday, 06 December 2011 08:21


cis_ki_any_gorbacov 
 
Dear friends!

Today I am living through two events which happen in my life for the first time.

This is my first time in Albania. I am grateful for the invitation to visit this country and for the hospitality from the leadership of Albania.

This is also the first time for me to attend a top chess competition. I should confess that it is long time since I have been at a chess board. When I was young, I used to like this game, but then politics has not left any space for other things, chess included.

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India - Gujarat, Tamil Nadu & Maharashtra
Monday, 05 December 2011 09:01
We are pleased to present an outline of the most important developments in India, sent by our member Ravindra M. Dongre. 

aicf_logoIn India Chess is a very popular game and is played in many schools across the country. Also there are several Inter-School Chess Tournaments in almost every district of the country. 

However, chess was not introduced officially in the schools until two years ago, when this was first done in the state of Gujarat. Thanks to the initiative of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, chess was introduced as a subject in schools.

It is taught twice a week in every school of Gujarat.

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South Africa
Thursday, 01 December 2011 23:11

mandelaThere are many countries where the work of getting chess into the schools is complicated. South Africa is a good example. The national federation has overall responsibility and works, following normal protocol, with both the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Sport. Then there are other initiatives, notably Moves for Life, who now have the involvement of the Kasparov Chess Foundation and also cooperate with the David MacEnulty Chess Foundation. It is not easy to get all the initiatives working together in the same direction. In South Africa they seem to be close to agreeing a unified way forward, perhaps inspired by one of Nelson Mandela’s most famous quotes “It always seems impossible until it's done.” 

Our thanks to Emelia Ellappen, President of the South African Chess Federation, to David MacEnulty and to Kelvin Kemm, Watu Kobese, Afrika Msimang and Marisa van der Merwe of Moves for Life. They have all, one way or another, provided some of the material that follows in this lengthy report.

The report is in three sections:
1. From the Dederation's web site.
2. David MacEnulty's report.
3. Moves for Life report on their developments.
 

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