Physical Education School Sport Physical Activity – Autumn Term update

A Melrose Learning Trust School

PESSPA update: Autumn Term 2021

Dear parents/carers, Below is the PESSPA (Physical Education School Sport Physical Activity) update for the Autumn Term.  The first point to note is that all classes in school access two hours of P.E on a weekly basis thus ensuring we are meeting the requirements of the National Curriculum.  During this term, Year 6 have been accessing swimming and water safety provision every Monday afternoon.  We have prioritised Year 6 this term as the statutory, legal requirement of the National Curriculum is that the children are able to: Swimming and water safety In particular, pupils should be taught to:
  • swim competently, confidently and proficiently over a distance of at least 25 metres
  • use a range of strokes effectively [for example, front crawl, backstroke and breaststroke]
  • perform safe self-rescue in different water-based situations
The assessment of these skills is reported to the Government at the end of each academic year as the proportion of Year 6 children who have met the minimum requirements stipulated above. Also during this Autumn Term, Year 5 have, and will continue to do so throughout the academic year, accessed a forest schools provision.  This has taken place on our school site and entailed a range of outdoor pursuits, predominantly involving bushcraft.  Over the course of the coming terms, the children will also access beach schools and climbing provision.  This is an enhancement to our provision that we will prioritise to continue over the coming academic years. As part of our RESPECT Curriculum in school, each class will access the Commando Joe’s program.  This entails each class completing missions based on various elements of the RESPECT curriculum, such as teamwork and empathy etc.  Each class will be working on these missions throughout the course of the academic year. To aid with transition (and to enhance the P.E provision) from Key Stage Two to Key Stage Three, Year 6 have been accessing additional P.E sessions at Easington Academy which have been run by the PE staff from the Academy with Mrs. Appleby.  These additional sessions have, and will continue to take place, on a Thursday morning.  During this term, the children have completed sessions focusing on badminton and basketball.  There is a basketball competition being held on Thursday 2nd December, at Easington Academy, in which our Year 6 children will participate. Mr. Appleby has also been running the school football during the course of the Autumn Term.  Children from Year 5 and 6 have been completing in our local league competition and various cup competitions.  The matches have been held on a Thursday after school.  The league is currently on a winter break and this will resume after Christmas.  Thank you to all the parents, grandparents and carers who have attended the matches to support out team-they have a great start to the season so we are hopeful this will continue when the league restarts. As you may also be aware, our school is also a member of the Easington School Sports Partnership (ESSP).  Being a member of this partnership allows school access to various sporting competitions and events.  During the course of this Autumn Term, we have competed/participated in the following events:
  • A multi-skills festival which was specifically for our EYFS children
  • Tag-rugby – Year 5/6
  • Netball – Year 5/6                                                                                                                                                            PTO
  • Girls football – Year 5/6
  • A Year 4 Football competition is due to take place before Christmas – COVID allowing.
  There is a plethora of other events which have been orgainsed to take place across the course of the academic year, which will involve all year groups.  It is worth noting whilst there are numerous events that are due to take place, each child in school will not be able to participate in all events.  As a small school, we endeavour to ensure that all of our children will have some element of school sport during their time in each year group in school.  This, added to the requirements of each event, e.g. for the girls football competition we were only able to send one team with a maximum of 9 players, means that not all children will compete in all events. I have also contacted the County Advisor for P.E. to request more opportunities for Key Stage 1 and EYFS children to access a wider and increased range of activities and sporting festivals throughout the academic year.  After a positive response, we will hopefully see more opportunities for our younger children moving forward although this may not happen until the academic year 2022-2023. I have also organised for the school to participate in a county wide initiative called the ‘Go-Well Heart project’.  This is specifically for Key Stage Two children.  Each child will receive a bag of various sporting items to keep and use at home, which are free of charge.  The children will also receive a booklet with ideas and activities for how they could use the equipment at home.  A large part of this project is the need for parental support in order to complete these fun and engaging activities so hopefully you will all get involved when the opportunity arises! School’s after school provision has also been utilised to provide children with a range of sporting experiences.  So far this Autumn Term, we have offered the following sporting opportunities:
  • Fencing
  • Table Tennis
  • Foundation of Light – multi-skills club
These sporting clubs are also in addition to the other clubs currently being run, such as choir and cinema club etc. I have also recently pledged to the Active Mark for the school.  This is where school endeavours to provide children will additional time to be active throughout the course of the school day, in addition to the Chief Medical Officers’ recommendation.  Another opportunity arose through Mr. Adey of the ESSP, to pledge to increase the participation of girls in football.  This has been developed by the Youth Sport Trust and has a Disney Theme this year.  I am booked onto the first module of training in early January so look for the program to start in the New Year! It is also worth noting that as a school we are tasked ensure that the curriculum is broad and balanced to ensure children are given the most well-rounded and productive education possible, for the maximum benefit of our amazing children. This is the primary focus when considering how the curriculum is organised and delivered to our children. Apologies for the length of this letter.  I will produce another update at the end of the Spring Term to again detail school’s level of participation in PESSPA.  Should you have any questions or queries, please feel free to contact me through the school office. Kindest regards, Mr. Churchill

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