Launch of GAA 5 Star Centre Initiative for Primary Schools

THE GAA Games Development and Research Department has recently developed the 5 Star Centre initiative for primary schools. The GAA 5 Star Centre initiative aims to ensure that every child get 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity per week throughout the 26 weeks of the school year. In doing so, it will enhance the development of children’s fundamental & functional movement abilities – culminating in bi-lateral coordination – and wellbeing so that children will experience fun, friendship, fairness, freedom and, ultimately, develop their fitness.


To become a GAA 5 Star Centre, primary school teachers would organise a range of activities for all children to participate in, with GAA personnel acting in a support capacity. The diverse range activities include Have a Ball, Fun & Run, Camán & Play, Catch & Kick, Skill Challenges and Go Games. Have a Ball is a series of fun-based exercises that contribute to the development of children’s rudimentary and fundamental movement skills. The GAA piloted it in Killinure N.S. and Lisnagry N.S., Limerick earlier this year. Research conducted by a team from Dublin City University reported that, after a six-week intervention, there was overall increase of 7.3% in children’s fundamental movement skill ability. Another exciting new game called Fun & Run, involving a team of batters/kickers and fielders, is suitable for all age and ability levels. It is particularly suited to meet the needs of people with disabilities, people from socially deprived and ethnic minority groups who often perceive themselves to be excluded from mainstream GAA activities.


GAA President, Aogán Ó Fearghaíl, wholeheartedly welcomes this new initiative: “The GAA 5 Star Centre initiative has the potential to make an enormous contribution to the health and wellbeing of Ireland’s children. We want every single boy and girl in Ireland to have had positive introduction to our games by the time they leave primary school.  The 5 Star Centre initiative is a means of achieving this.”


“Being a primary school principal myself for X years, I understand how Gaelic games has such an influential role in the culture of the vast majority of primary schools nationwide. Without the contribution of Primary School Teachers, the GAA would not be the wonderful organisation it is today. We want to recognise this significant voluntary effort through our new 5 Star flag, which we hope will be a symbol of how proud we are to promote our games and our culture.”     


Primary School Teachers/Principals who wish to express interest in becoming a GAA 5 Star Centre can do so at  

Click on the following link for more information about the programme: 




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