£500K for schools to trial new Ofsted-friendly PE

Cash is part of £2.4m DfE sports fund to encourage schools to open facilities in the evening and in holidays

Sports boost: The Department for Education is to give £500K to nine schools to trial new Ofsted-friendly approaches to PE

Nine schools are to share a £500,000 grant to trial new ways to engage the least active pupils in PE lessons – and to meet new Ofsted inspection requirements.

The schools, yet to be named, are in different parts of the country and are each known for their expertise in sport.

The Department for Education said the cash will also help them to develop the skills and confidence of PE teachers and "test new ways to provide high-quality PE lessons that meet Ofsted’s new inspection framework, which requires schools to create opportunities for children to be physically active across the day".

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The cash is part of total funding worth £2.4 million from the DfE, announced today, to encourage better sports activities in schools.

It includes £1.6 million to enable schools to open up their sports facilities to communities after school and in the school holidays.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson said: "Many schools already open up their facilities so their communities can benefit and I want to encourage even more to do so.

Sports opportunities in schools

"By backing schools with this extra money, we can make more fun activities available all year round – everything from football to dodgeball – to help children find a sport that they will enjoy and that will keep them healthy."

The cash will also help schools in 19 areas to form partnerships with local sports clubs and sport providers through the Active Partnerships network, supported by Sport England.

And schools will be able to generate additional sustainable income from leasing their premises to external organisations at affordable rates.

The DfE also said that the extended school day could benefit parents and carers by "helping to accommodate working patterns after school, at the weekend and during school holidays".

A grant worth £20,000 has been awarded for Birmingham to increase the number of youth volunteers in the community, ahead of the Commonwealth Games to be hosted by the city in 2022. (This is part of a £300,000 funding package to encourage volunteering opportunities in other parts of the country).

Sports minister Nigel Adams said: "The 2022 Commonwealth Games will not just be about two weeks of sport – it will open up a wealth of opportunities for people across the West Midlands, leaving a lasting sporting legacy for the region. So I encourage young people to make the most of these opportunities, particularly by getting involved in community sport."

Areas supported by the £1.6 million to open school facilities include Dorset, Wiltshire and Swindon, Cornwall, Essex, Cumbria, Suffolk, Norfolk, Gloucestershire, Leicestershire and Rutland, the Black Country, Hertfordshire, Lancashire, Tees Valley, London, Greater Manchester, Northamptonshire, Northumberland and Tyne and Wear, Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes, North Yorkshire and County Durham.

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