Call to use Olympics to inspire Norfolk children

The gauntlet has been thrown down for teachers to use the Olympic values to inspire schoolchildren.

More than 80 teachers, headteachers and school representatives yesterday heard how they could use next year's Olympic and Paralympic Games to support learning and to motivate.

The event, held by Norfolk County Council at the Norwich Castle Museum, gave teachers the chance to meet the London 2012 education team and learn how they can obtain Get Set Network status, which entitles them to a range of opportunities, including the possibility of tickets to the Games and a visit from an athlete.

They also discovered how they could help win their school an �8,800 grant and an art competition was launched, asking youngsters to take inspiration from the seven values of the Games, a link to an Olympian or Paralympian from the past or present or something which captures the Olympic torch.

Anna McCarthy, creative projects officer at County Hall, said: 'It's about teachers being able to understand and interpret the values of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and seeing how those seven values have a place in everyday life.

'Teachers are the beams of light in the classroom and they can be the Olympic torchbearers, passing on those values and inspiring and motivating children in the classroom and in their everyday lives.'

The Olympic values are respect, excellence, friendship, courage, determination, inspiration and equality.

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So far, 40 schools and colleges have Get Set Network status. Members of the scheme are currently being invited to apply for grants to lead activities which encourage other schools to make the most of the London 2012 Games over the next academic year. The deadline for applications is November 4 but there will be another opportunity between November 28 and January 6.

Joe Ballard, London 2012 Inspire programmer for the east of England, said: 'If we can get a long-lasting legacy in schools, that will ensure a lasting legacy with young people.'

As well as the Get Set programme, teachers found out more about other projects in Norfolk including Dance Aloud, Artists for Climate Change, Children's Universities and the Inspirational Science Theatre.

Stephen Plume, from Ormiston Venture Academy in Gorleston, near Great Yarmouth, who attended the event, said: 'There are fantastic opportunities available to us to use this international event to raise aspirations of our own children in Norfolk and there are lots of things which can help us have a lasting legacy.

'The Olympic values are very close to our own values which is great and now we've got to consider how to best utilise the opportunities available to give our students the best opportunity possible.'

On your marks for issue four of London Calling, our free monthly guide to the London 2012 Olympic Games. This month we feature the Olympic venues, chat to Norwich hopeful Barbara Parker and find out which firms in Norfolk are already raking it in thanks to the event. All this and more in the paper on Tuesday, October 25. To see up to the minute Olympic news log on to

If you have an Olympic-related story contact Kate Scotter on 01603 772326.

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