THE Department of Education (DepEd) has scrapped boxing for the elementary division of the Palarong Pambansa for this year, after accidents occurred during competitions and training, with at least one winding up dead.
According to a memorandum issued by Education Secretary Armin Luistro, the said contact sport would no longer be included in the 2014 Palarong Pambansa scheduled on May 4 to 10 in Santa Cruz, Laguna.
“Boxing in the elementary division shall be excluded,” Luistro said in the memo.
Calls to ban boxing in schools mounted in December following the death of a 16-year-old student boxer who was hurt at a regional athletic meet in Zambales.
Jonas Garcia, a fourth-year high school student from Bulacan, died at the University of Santo Tomas hospital in Manila after blacking out at a boxing match. According to reports, Garcia’s opponent has been undergoing counseling because he was greatly affected by what happened
Luistro, meanwhile, said futsal, billiards, wushu and wrestling will remain demonstration sports. This means that while the winners will be awarded medals but their victories will have no bearing on the standings of the regions they represent.
Sepak Takraw in the elementary division shall be renamed Sepak Takraw Jr., while Sepak Takraw for girls shall be added to the high school division as a demonstration event.