Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez (second from left) with Antonio Becalli Garrido, president of the Sports, Physical Education, and Recreation Institute (left), and other leaders, during national meeting of sports educators. Photo: Estudio Revolución

Leaders of Cuba’s nation sports education system met yesterday, May 24, in Havana’s Cojimar Convention Center, to prepare for the 2018-2019 academic year, providing fertile ground for discussion on education, in sports schools and beyond, and an opportunity to highlight the often anonymous work of teachers and trainers, while noting what has been accomplished and what remains to be done.

Meeting with authorities and professional staff of the nation’s sport’s system, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, emphasized quality in his remarks, because “this must be the essence and premise of our education.”

He referred to the special historical motivations that will define the coming school year, including the 150th anniversary of the beginning of Cuba’s independence struggle, providing an opportunity to bring history to life in classrooms, including the country’s honorable tradition in sports and our values. The President noted that dealing with problems requires both the application of scientific research and listening to those working in classrooms and on the field.

Among issues Diaz-Canel addressed were the importance of professional development at all levels, to avoid improvisation; the ongoing discussion regarding Cuba’s national baseball league; the repair and maintenance of sports facilities; and the further development of media coverage, including our presence on social networks, to disseminate the accomplishments of our sports movement and point of view.

Díaz-Canel said he was confident that Cuban athletes will perform admirably at the upcoming Central American and Caribbean Games in Barranquilla, and that the 2018-2019 academic year will be a successful one, given the country’s commitment to sports.