2 Jul 2012
School children from five Get Set network schools in Essex will form a Guard of Honour to line the route as athletes make their way through the Olympic Park into the Olympic Stadium, for the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony.
At the start of the Athletes’ Parade, during the athletes’ procession from the Olympic Village to the Olympic Stadium, the schools who will join 31 schools from the region and many more from across the UK and make up the 2,000 student Guard of Honour will line the route, holding lanterns and banners they have created to support each of the 204 competing teams. For many of the 10,500 athletes the Guard of Honour will be their first experience of the London 2012 Games.
Essex County Councillor Stephen Castle, Cabinet Member for Education, Lifelong Learning & the 2012 Games said “This is a wonderful opportunity for Essex students to experience the magic of the London 2012 Games at first hand; being selected for this honour shows their continued commitment to the Olympic and Paralympic values, and I am very proud of them all.”
The school children have been preparing to provide a vibrant and diverse welcome for athletes competing at the Games. The students are already learning about the cultures and athletes of the 204 teams as part of their celebrations for London 2012 World Sport Day taking place next month on 25 June. World Sport Day, presented by Lloyds TSB, will see schools across the UK join together in celebrating how sport can bring the cultures of the world together. The schools forming the Guard of Honour will support one of the teams that they have chosen to learn about.
The Guard of Honour schools have been selected through the reward and recognition programme of the Get Set network, the official London 2012 education programme. They have demonstrated a commitment to living the Olympic and Paralympic Values and incorporating them into their school lives and curriculum.
Mayflower High School has been linked to Singapore. They have created a mural painting about the country and what influences their culture. They have been linked with a school in Singapore and the Mayflower Olympic Ambassadors have been exchanging emails discussing their education similarities and differences. As a result they have adopted Singapore as a country that they are going to support alongside Great Britain and have been finding out about different athletes that are going to be representing that country.
LOCOG Chair, Seb Coe said: ‘The presence of so many young people at the start of the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony will continue to show London 2012’s commitment to put young people at the heart of the Games. For athletes, the Guard of Honour will provide a stunning welcome to the Games and the perfect curtain raiser to the Athletes’ Parade.’
One of the school’s Olympic Ambassadors, Jade Wheeler (13 of Billericay) said, “I have been excited to correspond with a girl from a school in Singapore and I have been finding out about her Education and interests. We have found that we have things in common even though she is half way around the world in a different country. I have enjoyed working on the Olympics projects that our Ambassador team have been working on and it has given me an experience that I will remember for the rest of my life.”
As well as having the opportunity to cheer on the world’s best athletes and be part of a global moment, the school children will also get the exciting chance to tour the Olympic Park and see some of the London 2012 venues before the world turns its attention to Danny Boyle’s Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in the Olympic Stadium later that day.
The Athletes’ Parade will see the participating teams enter the Stadium, nation by nation. Teams enter in alphabetical order, according to the language of the Host Country and IOC protocol order apart from the Greek team which enters first for the Olympic Games, and Team GB who as the Host Nation will be the last to enter.