Physical Education

Department for Education written question – answered on 21st October 2015.

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Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps her Department is taking to improve physical fitness standards in schools.

Photo of Edward Timpson Edward Timpson Minister of State (Education)

We want all children to lead healthy and active lives. Physical Education (PE) is a compulsory subject at all four key stages in the national curriculum. The programme of study makes clear that a high-quality PE curriculum should provide opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness.

Through the introduction of the primary PE and Sport Premium in 2013, primary schools will have received over £450 million of ring-fenced funding to improve the quality of their PE and sport provision.

The Department of Health provided £1.5 million this year to fund Change4Life Sports Clubs which target less active children in primary schools. An independent evaluation published on 19 October 2015in 2012/13 found that over two years the number of children who were active for at least 60 minutes every day was 69 per cent higher after 12 weeks in the Change4Life primary schools sports clubs than it was when they started. Researchers estimate that this represents an additional 33,000 children achieving this level over the life of the programme. Since 2011, 270,000 primary school children have benefitted from the sports clubs. The report can be found at: http://www.canterbury.ac.uk/social-and-applied-sciences/human-and-life-sciences/spear/docs/change-4-life-final-report.pdf

We are working closely with the Department of Health and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport on their respective forthcoming strategies on childhood obesity and sports. The strategies will tackle childhood obesity and increase the number of people participating in sport and wider physical activity.

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