A Chess in Schools Conference, organized by the European Chess Union (ECU) took place in the European Parliament during the afternoon of 24 February.
Speakers from a variety of European countries were led by MEP Claudia Tapardel, ECU President Azmaiparashvili, ECU EDU Chairman Hall & GM Judit Polgar.
Others in attendance included MEPs, FIDE CiS Chairman Kevin O'Connell and members/advisers of both the ECU Educational Commission and the FIDE Chess in Schools Commission.
The opportunity was taken to make several presentations. The ECU President gave five awards – to MEPs Ana Claudia Tapardel from Romania and Silvia Costa from Italy, to Mr. Sorin Iacoban, President of the Romanian Chess Federation and a Member of the Romanian Parliament, and to the Judit Polgar and Garry Kasparov chess foundations, for their contributions in the implementation of chess as a subject in European schools.
FIDE's Chess in Schools Commission Chairman presented the Commission's gold lapel badge to MEP Ana Claudia Tapardel and to Mr Irakli Rekhviashvili of the Bank of Georgia for their contributions to the development of chess in schools.
Mrs Tapardel was instrumental in enabling the conference to take place inside the parliament where the important Written Declaration 50/211 (which calls upon the European Commission and Member States to encourage the development of chess in schools - full text here:*) was endorsed by 415 MEPs on 13 Match, 2012. Mrs Tapardel is a member of several Committees of the European Parliament, not least the very important Committee on Budgets.
* http://cis.fide.com/images/stories/GlobalFuture2_2014/globalfuture_150dpi_small_6.5mb.pdf (on pp24-25)
| MEP Claudia Tapardel
|| ECU President GM Zurab Azmaiparashvili
The Bank of Georgia is an important sponsor of chess in schools in Georgia, of the ECU and without their aid (€10,000) this conference, if it had taken place at all, would have been on a much reduced level.
You can actually watch the conference on the Chessdom site: http://www.chessdom.com/chess-in-school-conference-european-parliament-brussels/ (timetable - approximate! - below).
|ECU EDU Chairman Jesper Hall
||GM Judit Polgar
|Preparing for the conference
||Gülkiz Tulay - Kevin O'Connell
16.30 – 16.45 – Welcome Speeches
- MEPClaudia Tapardel (ROU), Welcome Speech
- Zurab Azmaiparashvili (GEO), President of the European Chess Union, Welcome Speech
- Jesper Hall (SWE), Chairman of ECU EDU Commission, Welcome Speech & Presentation of the participants.
16.45 – 17.00 – ECU Projects
– Irakli Rekhviashvili (GEO), representative of the Bank of Georgia, sponsor of ECU, Bank´s perspective
– Jesper Hall (SWE) – ECU CIS Survey
– Martin Huba (SVK), ECU Treasurer – ECU & EU Programs
17.00 – 18.00 – 5-8 min. presentations from:
- GM Judit Polgar (HUN), “Judit Polgar Chess Foundation” “Chess In Palace” CIS Program
- Leo Battesti (FRA), Chairman of Corsica Chess League – CIS in Corsica
- Alessandro Dominici (ITA), FIDE chess Instructor, Member of the CIS Committee of the Italian Chess Federation, Consultant to Chairman of the FIDE CIS Commission
- Vlad Ungureanu (ROU), Mathematics Teacher, Chairman of Chess in School Committee, Romanian Chess Federation
- José Francisco Suárez Roa (ESP), Phd Psychology, Chairman of the CTMYE of the Spanish Chess Federation
- Jesper Hall (SWE) – CIS Programs in Sweden
- Malcolm Pein (UK), Chief Executive Chess in Schools and Communities charity, International Director English Chess Federation – CIS Programs in UK
- Giorgi Giorgadze (GEO), President of Georgian Chess Federation – CIS Programs in Georgia
- Mrs. Gulkız Tulay (TUR) President of Turkish Chess Federation, Mr. Kasım Yekeler (TUR) Board Member and Chairman of CIS Committee of Turkish Chess Federation – CIS Programs in Turkey.
18.00 – 18.20 Q&A session
18.20 – 18.25 Summary and conclusions, Jesper Hall and Zurab Azmaiparashvili
18.25 – 18.30 Final remarks, MEP Claudia Tapardel