School Swimming

House of Lords written question – answered on 4th February 2004.

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Photo of Lord Moynihan Lord Moynihan Conservative

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will (a) provide an update on the swimming review which is part of the Physical Education, School Sport and Club Links Strategy; and (b) detail the funding available to implement the review.

Photo of Baroness Ashton of Upholland Baroness Ashton of Upholland Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare), Department for Education and Skills, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare), Department for Work and Pensions, Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions) (Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare) (also Department for Education and Science), Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education and Skills) (Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare) (also Department for Work and Pensions)

The Swimming work strand within the national PE, School Sport and Club Links strategy, has taken forward all of the key recommendations made by the Swimming Advisory Group. An executive summary of the group's report and the Government's response was published on 17 October 2002 and a copy was placed in the House of Lords Library. We have:

created (in October 2002) a new swimming and water safety website which provides practical support for schools and swimming teachers; carried out (during the summer term 2003) two pilot programmes to test out how best to support those children who reach the end of key stage 2 unable to swim 25 metres; an executive summary of this report was published on 21 January 2004; and published a Swimming Charter in December 2003. The charter offers guidance, best practice case studies and provides practical support to help schools and local authorities overcome many of the challenges they face when planning and delivering school swimming.

Furthermore, the national strategy's professional development work strand will help to improve the quality of swimming teaching throughout England. The programme will identify where there is most need and provide specific professional development and support to help ensure high quality swimming tuition in schools. The programme went live in 2003.

I refer the noble Lord, Lord Moynihan, to the Answer I gave him on 8 January 2004, (Official Report, col. WA 57) which gives the names and budgets of the PE and school sports programmes run jointly by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for Education and Skills.

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