Tue | Feb 25, 2020

Wolmer’s Prep benefits from TTJ development programme

Published:Tuesday | March 5, 2019 | 12:16 AM
Godfrey Lothian, president, Table Tennis Jamaica, makes a presentation of table tennis racquets, balls and a table to Ms Janet Howard, principal, Wolmer’s Preparatory School, at the institution yesterday. Along with curious students, others looking on (from left) are PTA President Lisa Reynolds, Board Chairman Ryan Foster and coach Raymond Leveridge.
Godfrey Lothian, president, Table Tennis Jamaica, makes a presentation of table tennis racquets, balls and a table to Ms Janet Howard, principal, Wolmer’s Preparatory School, at the institution yesterday. Along with curious students, others looking on (from left) are PTA President Lisa Reynolds, Board Chairman Ryan Foster and coach Raymond Leveridge.

Wolmer’s Prep School became the latest addition to Table Tennis Jamaica’s (TTJ) platform of development with infrastructural benefit in the form of a table tennis board, racquets and balls.

The presentation, which took place under the watchful eyes of the school’s lead team and scores of enthusiastic students, was made by Godfrey Lothian, TTJ’s president to Ms Janet Howard, principal of the Connolley Avenue-based institution yesterday.

“Wolmer’s Prep is a continuation of the development of our grassroots programme.

“Over the last four years we’ve been pressing to develop the primary and prep schools across the country and Wolmer’s Prep has a large community and we want to develop table tennis in this institution, as well as the 200-odd prep schools and the 800-odd primary schools across Jamaica,” said Lothian.

“So today is very important to Table Tennis Jamaica because what it does, it fulfils our mandate to start at an early age,” added Lothian.

“Santoshi Takashima, the Japanese coach who was here, he told us that we’re starting too late, we need to start at five years old. Wolmer’s Prep has young kids, kids who can learn the different rudiments of the game from early, and that is what it’s about.”

Howard welcomed the presentation, noting it will enable their long-held desire of introducing the sport to their students.

“This is an awesome representation. We’re very grateful for a table tennis board, our challenge has always been having a table tennis board,” said Howard. “The students, of course, because we won the Alberga Cup (prep schools football league title) recently, this is just one way of having better preparation towards greater achievement in sport.”

Howard continued: “At Wolmer’s Prep we believe in the total child. Sports in one way, even with the NSC; having the four Cs – creativity, critical thinking, collaboration and communication, sports is one way of getting them involved and doing all of that to excel academically.

“I’d like to share also that we did well in the last GSAT. We are working very hard, teachers, parents, students to do well at the PEP exams this year. We have robotics coming on stream, that will also help with the four Cs and to help our children to be doing more critical thinking. So (at) Wolmer’s Prep, our aim is to continue to excel at whatever we do,” the principal added.

The equipment comes by virtue of a partnership between TTJ and Indian company Stag and Lothian pointed out that their donations have now reached the 400 mark.

“We signed a four-year agreement with Stag International in India. I got the privilege to be in Germany in 2017, where I signed this agreement for four years. So every year we’ll be getting a certain amount of equipment, including tables, balls, racquets, gear, and so on. So we’ll be making donations from time to time to the schools and to the different institutions that play table tennis,” shared Lothian.

He added: “To date, from 2013 we’ve made some 400 presentations to clubs, schools, communities, churches and business places across the country and we’ll continue in this vein, that is one of our mandates.

“We have some key pillars of our strategic plan; to ensure that we have the best coaches in the Caribbean; develop the table tennis college of the Caribbean; to ensure that we spread the sport in a participatory was as wide and as broad as possible; to ensure that we put in infrastructure across the country.”