Press release

£150 million to boost primary school sport

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Primary schools receive fresh funding boost of over £150 million to improve PE lessons as part of the PE and sport premium.

Headteachers have already used the PE and sport premium to recruit hundreds of extra specialist PE teachers, to buy new equipment and to offer a wider selection of sports, and free after-school clubs.

Research has shown that 9 out of 10 schools have already improved the quality of their PE lessons as a result of the funding - and more than 90% reported improvements in children’s health, behaviour and lifestyle.

As a result, figures show that on average primary school pupils are spending more time in PE lessons. Last year pupils spent an average of 122 minutes every week doing PE - up by 13 minutes from the previous year.

Minister for Children and Families Edward Timpson said that primary schools were delivering better quality lessons as a result of the extra money, and devoting more time to PE.

A typical primary school with 250 pupils will receive £9,000 following today’s announcement - which is equivalent to the cost of employing a specialist sports coach for 2 days each week.

Announcing the latest allocations, Edward Timpson visited Vauxhall Primary School in London today (3 November 2014), where he took part in a PE lesson and watched a football match.

Minister for Children and Families Edward Timpson said:

As part of our plan for education, we want all children to get into the habit of playing and enjoying sport in primary school as it can help instil confidence, discipline and determination.

Thanks to our PE and sport premium, primary schools are offering more and better quality sport programmes - and this funding boost will help headteachers go further.

Whether a child is a potential future Olympic champion or a keen amateur like me, I want them all to be given the chance to fulfill their sporting potential.

The latest PE and sport premium allocation is the second of 3 annual payments worth a total of over £450 million which this government is committed to giving to schools.

The funding, introduced in 2013, goes directly to primary school headteachers so that they can decide how best to use it to provide PE and sporting activities for pupils.

Vauxhall Primary School has used its PE and sport premium funding to extend the range of after-school clubs, replace sports equipment and increase participation in competitions.

Vauxhall Primary School headteacher Mr Edison David said:

The sports premium has enabled us to create opportunities for pupils to receive specialist training and to access competitive sports.

Its benefits range from our pupils’ heightened sense of competition and achievement, healthy camaraderie, teamwork, and high levels of social skills developed through exposure to numerous sports competitions throughout the year.

This year’s funding will be used to continue providing our pupils with specialist coaching in various sports, access inter-school and pan-London competitions, and to fund enrichment activities aimed at improving pupils’ fitness and physical wellbeing.

Sue Wilkinson, from the Association for Physical Education (afPE), said:

We are extremely pleased that headteachers are using their funding to increase the amount of time spent on curriculum physical education, and improving learning opportunities for teachers so they can deliver the very best quality lessons.

Since the initial investment, evidence demonstrates a transformational shift with physical education and sport driving whole school improvement and making a significant contribution to young peoples’ health and wellbeing.

We hope that with the continued investment, schools will continue to create a sustainable legacy for PE and sport.

Notes to editors

  1. See a school-by-school breakdown of PE and sport premium funding allocations for academic year 2014 to 2015.

  2. The research report ‘PE and sport premium: an investigation in primary schools’ was based on a survey of primary schools between April and July 2014. It looked at how headteachers have spent the money and the impact of that spending on schools.

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