Job search
Job Search

Thought Leader: Andy Reed

There needs to be cross-party consensus about what we want to achieve with physical education in schools, says Andy Reed

by Andy Reed | Published in Sports Management 2018 issue 1
Read on turning pages | Download PDF of this issue
The number of young people taking part in school sport competitions is declining / shutterstock
The number of young people taking part in school sport competitions is declining/ shutterstock

The release of the DCMS Taking Part 2016/17 quarter 4 survey caused almost no news or reaction. Yet the survey showed that the numbers of pupils taking part in sporting competitions against other schools dropped from 31 per cent to 25 per cent. Other indicators showed declines in National School Sport Week, pupils playing in teams and being members of sports clubs. In the past we would likely have seen an outcry in the Daily Telegraph, but now nothing.

Have we stopped caring or is everyone simply confused? The more I look at school sport policy the less I understand about what we’re trying to achieve for children.

As adult participation policy has moved away from a focus on sport to one on physical activity, we’ve seen the same happening in school policy. This shift, however, has happened without being part of a wider plan for what we want children to have achieved by the time they leave school, thus making things muddled.

In search of a solution
After years of just defining the problem, we need a clear solution. We must look at what we want to achieve and then work backwards to how it can be done. The Department for Education (DFE) states that by years 11 and 12 students should have “the opportunity to plan and participate in a regular, frequent and balanced programme of physical education that, among other things, contributes to, and helps to sustain, a healthy and active lifestyle”.

How do we achieve this?
I would love to see the DFE Education Select Committee Report: School sport following London 2012: No More Political Football become a reality. We need a cross-party consensus both inside and outside parliament about the purpose and objectives for school sport.

Perhaps a great first start would be to define what school sport is. Is it competitive sport, physical activity or physical literacy? They are all different enough to require different inputs and lead to different outcomes.

A collaborative approach
A consensus should include advice from a variety of professionals about what the end goal looks like for a 16- to 18-year-old leaving school. While the emphasis is likely to be on physical activity rather than sport, I don’t believe it needs to be one or the other. We can create a mix that gives young people the base they need to be active in whatever way they choose.

If we can collaborate on this clear approach we can stop school PE and sport being kicked around at the whim of each new administration inside DFE and create a generation of young people who are well equipped to lead healthy lifestyles in the future.

Andy Reed is the founder of Sports Think Tank, former MP for Loughborough, and chair of SAPCA sportsthinktank.com

Sign up for FREE ezines & magazines
Sports jobs
Everyone Active
featured job

Swimming Teachers

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive hourly rate
Job location: Nationwide

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 per annum (39 hours a weeks pro rata
Location: Cockermouth, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 per annum (39 hours a weeks pro rata
Location: Gerrards Cross, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £9.00 per hour
Location: Woodstock, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 pa (39 hours a weeks pro rata)
Location: Wallingford, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 per annum (39 hours a weeks pro rata
Location: Wallingford, Oxfordshire, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 pa (39 hours a week pro rata)
Location: Wallingford, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 per annum (39 hours a weeks pro rata)
Location: Abingdon, Oxfordshire, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Competitive
Location: Belfast, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £9.00 per hour
Location: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, UK
recruiting with sports management

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £8.21 per hour
Location: Swindon, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 pa (39 hours a weeks pro rata)
Location: Taunton, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £9.00 per hour
Location: Cambridge, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Competitive
Location: Amersham, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 per annum
Location: Leyton, London, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £10.55 per hour
Location: Leyton, London, UK

Apprentice Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 pa (40 hours a week pro rata)
Location: Stratford, London, UK
recruiting with sports management

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 pa (39 hours a weeks pro rata)
Location: Swindon, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £9.00 per hour
Location: Bath, UK

Recreation Assistant

Mytime Active
Salary: £17,076 per annum pro rata
Location: Bromley, UK

Senior Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £23,894 per annum
Location: Crystal Palace, London, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £16,696 pa (39 hours a weeks pro rata)
Location: Kendal, UK

Finance Manager

The Gym Group
Salary: Competitive salary plus bonus
Location: Croydon, UK

Membership Consultant

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Lutterworth, UK
training with sports management

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £10.55 per hour
Location: Chingford, London, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £22,008 per annum (40 hours a week pro rata)
Location: Leytonstone, London, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £18,305 per annum (39 hours a weeks pro rata
Location: Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, UK

Duty Manager

Everyone Active
Salary: Competitive
Location: Fleet, UK

Senior Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £19,775 pa (39 hours a weeks pro rata)
Location: Cambridge, UK

Recreation Assistant (Lifeguard)

GLL
Salary: Up to £10.55 per hour
Location: Morden, UK

Recreation Assistant

Parkwood Leisure
Salary: Competitive
Location: Bristol, UK
lifeguard jobs  Swimming Teacher jobs  apprenticeships jobs  recreation assistant jobs  Gymnastics Coach jobs  Swimming Instructor jobs  membership consultant jobs  general manager jobs  General Assistant jobs  duty manager jobs  fitness instructor jobs  Customer Advisor jobs  Leisure Assistant jobs  Aqua Instructor jobs  Attractions Crew jobs 
More jobs

Video Gallery

Myzone
Tracking your workout effort just became effortless.
Visit website
More videos

Company profile

Company profile: Technogym
Founded in 1983, Technogym is a world leading international supplier of technology and design-driven products and services in the wellness and fitness industry.
View full profile >
More company profiles

Featured Supplier

TRX MAPS offers complete body movement assessment solution
TRX MAPS, powered by PHYSMODO, performs a complete body movement assessment in less than 30 seconds to provide a person with personalised exercises.
View full details >
More featured suppliers

Property & Tenders

Location: New Brighton, Wirral, Merseyside
Company: Wirral Borough Council
Location: Various Sites
Company: Porters Commercial
More properties & tenders

Diary dates

24-25 Apr 2019
Business Design Centre, London, United Kingdom
05-10 May 2019
Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, Queensland, Australia
08-09 May 2019
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
08-09 May 2019
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
More diary dates