The first nationwide PE Xpo took place in the Sports facilities of Trinity Comprehensive School Ballymun on Thursday the 30th of April. Overall there were 15 schools represented exhibiting 45 PE related projects and including a total entry of 200 students. Indeed, nationwide it really was, as students and teachers from Galway, Clare, Waterford, Louth, Westmeath, Limerick and Dublin made it all happen on the day.
M.C. for the day was Chris Steele of Celtic Sports Academy. Each project was judged on a certain criteria which included elements like creativity and innovation, the use of ICT, research methodology, concise conclusions & cross curricular links. The judges on the day included Niall Moyna, Sports Lecturer at Dublin City University, Eileen Gleeson, Dublin City Council, Conor Laverty, Intercounty captain of Down GAA and sports officer at Trinity College, Caroline Duggan, Senior Sports Development officer at Trinity College Dublin, Lindsey Peat, 4th Year PE Student at D.C.U., Karen Cotter of Active Flag Ireland and Therese Flood, PE teacher.
After the first round of judging took place the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Pascal Donahoe arrived and posed for photos with students and their projects as well as making a speech on the innovative and well researched projects he had observed. RTE news today presenters then arrived and interviewed students from the various schools and they will be showcasing this event on Tuesday the 5th of May on RTE 2 at 4.20 p.m..
The focus then switched to physical activity for an hour and a half on the astro turf pitches outside where each student had a choice of 7 sports. Judo was presented by Alan Martin, Kickboxing by Frank Walsh and Billy Duggan, Fencing by Doug Hazel, Tag Rugby by Kevin Furey of Unidare Rugby, Cricket by Conor Shields, Volleyball by Andrei Molnar and Fitness by Ger Prendergast.
The scene was finally set for the winning projects to receive their prizes. President of The PEAI, Fergal Lyons then concluded the day’s proceedings by commending all participating schools, teachers and students, activity coaches, Judges and all volunteers who contributed to an important day for PE in Ireland and one which now sets the tone for a PE Expo event to take place on an annual basis. Finally he thanked the Principal of Trinity Comprehensive School, Fran Neary for hosting the event and also the huge contribution from the PE Expo Committee consisting of Paddy O’Reilly, Gerry McDonnell, Chris Steele (Celtic Sports Academy), Caroline Duggan (Trinity College), Lyndsay Peat (D.C.U.), Eileen Gleeson (D.C.C.), Ger Prendergast (Bodyworks Gym), Lindie Naughton (The Herald) and Ronan Molloy (D.C.U.).
PE Xxpo 2016 is now already confirmed for Friday the 11th of March with its launch taking place next week in Trinity College Dublin by the PE Committee and the Minister for Health Leo Varadkar.
The PE Expo Committee would like to thank all involved, and in addition Daniel Twomey, Eamon Hammond and Albe Jenkins who helped manufacture the Expo stands and insured the event ran smoothly throughout, Terry Cassin of Umbro Ireland, Lee Brothers who provided the medals and trophies and Jane Wilde of The Independent Newspaper.