Let's get physical in primary

17th September 2004 at 01:00
John Cairney (TESS,August 27) and Malcolm Thorburn (TESS, September 3) raise pertinent points about physical education and the recommendations of the PE review group.

However, both argue from a secondary school perspective when, as is widely recognised, there are more fundamental difficulties in many primary schools such as insufficient specialist provision, insufficient support for class teachers, inadequate facilities and inadequate time allocation - to name a few.

The letter from the parent on the same page as Malcolm Thorburn's sums up succinctly practice which is not uncommon with regard to all areas of the expressive arts: "in addition to not getting homework, he was not getting regular PE, music or art. PE was cancelled if the class was too noisy" would the maths lesson have been cancelled for similar reasons?

Physical education is an entitlement for all children and young people.

However, the demand is for quality physical education with quality as defined by the physical activity task force.

This is a definition to underpin the philosophy and rationale for physical education in a modern society. To paraphrase Ewan Aitken, the local authorities' education spokesperson (TESS, September 3), the recommendations of the PE review group have provided the opportunity for us "to decide what we want to see as the end result".

Let's think laterally as well as linearly, work with Sportscotland and other partner agencies to ensure that all children and young people, 3-18, have opportunities to experience quality physical education as a matter of course.

Chris Wood

PE visiting teacher

Albert Place


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