In 2015 we surveyed more than 450 school and college students, aged 14 and above, and the results showed that 19% disliked or hated physical education (PE) at school.
Further research also shows that a bad experience at school can put children off physical activity for life – with girls more likely to dislike or hate PE.
Now, between 2018 and 2021, up to £13.5 million of National Lottery money is being invested by us in a secondary teacher training programme, run by a consortium of organisations including the Youth Sport Trust, the Association for Physical Education, Activity Alliance, the Teaching School Council and the Department for Education, offering bespoke specialist training and mentoring for up to 17,000 teachers and leaders.
“While some youngsters have a great experience of PE and sport at school, others don’t, and our research shows that can put them off being active for life,” said Mike Diaper, our Executive Director of Children and Young People.
“Lots of people have bad memories of being picked last for a team, or just feeling really uncomfortable in PE lessons.
“This programme is designed to stop that happening. It will help schools and individual teachers design a wider range of opportunities to increase young people’s enjoyment of sport and PE, which gives them a much better chance of being active in later life.”
This is the first significant investment into secondary school PE since 2008 and, while the training programme will not change the content of national curriculum requirements for PE, it will build on and enhance existing good practice and support necessary improvements for all children and young people.
The available funding is responsive to local needs and will support schools, through their Teaching School Alliance (TSA), to identify areas for improvement and drive change themselves.
We will be working with and supporting teaching professionals to identify inactive young people and to adapt the delivery of PE to ensure that all young people have a positive experience of PE, sport and physical activity.
How does the programme work?
The programme has been rolled out across England since December 2018 and follows a pilot scheme which started in May 2018 that involved 39 schools.
Training is offered primarily through the network of TSAs. Every TSA in England will be contacted by us to offer them funding of £3,350 per secondary school in their alliance.
Each TSA will be supported by a consultant from the consortium to identify the needs of the students and teachers in their school alliance, design a programme and access appropriate training, and demonstrate the impact on the programme’s outcomes.
The long-term outcomes of the programme are expected to be:
- Children and young people will experience a greater breadth of sport and physical activity at school
- A reduction in the number of children and young people perceiving to have poor experiences of PE and sport in school
- Teachers will have more focus on helping children and young people feel capable and confident in their abilities
- An improved confidence and attitude in teachers from schools across the alliance to encourage children and young people to be physically active
- Sustained positive change in the status of physical activity throughout all schools
- Improved mental and physical wellbeing of students
What the pilots schools thought
Impington Village College
"Sport England’s Secondary Teacher Training programme allows schools to be creative and ambitious, and in being so they can do something meaningful to help improve PE for their students."
Thomas Gainsborough School
"The programme created a buzz around the department. Sport England has created a programme that could have an unbelievable impact on their students."
How can schools get involved?
Any schools or teachers who are interested in taking part are invited to contact their TSA to find out whether they have been contacted by us, whether the TSA has expressed an interest and when they have chosen to take part.
Schools who are not part of a TSA and schools whose TSAs have turned down the opportunity can contact us to find out which TSAs might be most appropriate to join in their area.
If a TSA would like to be involved they can proactively provide the following information to the below email address:
- The name of the TSA
- The lead teaching school for this programme and its trading name
- The main contact we should liaise with for the purposes of this funding, including their name, email address and direct line phone number
- A list of secondary schools that they plan on working with for the purposes of the programme, usually the secondary schools within your TSA. We request that TSAs confirm with the schools in question that they are happy to be part of the TSA for the purposes of this programme before submitting this list
The TSA will then be allocated to a phase of the programme and can start preparing.
For more information or further questions please email firstname.lastname@example.org