Primary School Sports Funding 2020-2021
The Academy has embraced the Government’s additional PE and Sports funding over the last few years. It has given us the opportunity to provide our children with the chance to experience a wide range of new sports, as well as enhancing their understanding of more familiar sports. Some of the clubs offered include football, hockey, netball, dodgeball and rounders.
Our link with ACES and other schools in the Outwood cluster has meant an increased range of well-organised inter-school tournaments as well as establishing an excellent level of training in sports provided by ACES coaches. We have trained hard for these tournaments (including football, dodgeball, netball, cricket, rounders and cross-country) by providing our children with a range of after school clubs. Our children represented the school with one hundred percent effort and pride in all tournaments. Our sportsmanship and teamwork at these events was exemplary. We excelled in cross-country and hockey especially last year, taking part and winning in the Wakefield finals before going on to compete in the West Yorkshire games. Unfortunately, tournaments were cancelled due to Covid-19 and are still not scheduled to take place until 2021 at the earliest. We will be taking part in any socially-distanced competitions over the coming year. Last year we held a very successful socially distanced sports day and will be doing so again in 2021 if necessary.
We have built upon the existing good practice in PE at Rooks Nest Academy and helped to develop both the staff’s teaching of sport skills and the children’s experience of different sports/activities. Along with staff-led clubs, we have developed links with local sports companies and clubs over the last few years and we have had gymnastics, dance, rugby and football clubs run by local clubs taking place after school and intend to do so again next year. These clubs will all need to adhere to government and school rules around Covid-19. The dance club will be run by Northern Light Dance and has proved popular in previous years, whilst experienced coaches lead the popular football club from Frickley Athletic FC, which is now entering our 3rd year of a successful partnership. These clubs have helped us to achieve better results at Outwood competitions.
Some sporting activities we have done in previously were unable to be done last year due to Covid-19, and it may not be possible to run them this year either. Despite this, ‘a kilometre a day’ is still a big part of the curriculum with all year groups doing their best to complete one km per day (20 lengths of the field/hall). Our children walk/skip/jump (and even roll!) their way to complete the kilometre – all with a smile on their face!
A large chunk of our sports funding last year was put towards mental health education. We attempted to provide our children with the opportunity for a good standard of mental health education and become ‘happy and well-rounded individuals’ through access to a Yoga and PSHE cross-curriculum. The yoga provided children with calming/relaxing stress relief techniques, whilst also encouraging cooperation and teamwork between peers. These sessions proved a great success last year, supported by assessments carried out before and after some sessions, showing the progress pupils felt they had made. The yoga proved to be successful but was again stopped due to Covid-19.
Last year our school maintained gold on the well-recognised ‘school games mark’ award. This award is not easy to achieve and demonstrates just how far Rooks Nest Academy’s PE curriculum and the teaching of PE has come over the last few years. It is a massive credit to all our staff, who have made achieving this award possible.
This year, our primary sports funding will be spent on three main areas. A chunk of the budget will again be spent on Outdoor learning next year, as we attempt to further the cross-curricular nature of our school with active lessons outdoors based on topics that year groups are learning. Secondly, a large section of the budget will again be spent on ACES, as we will be having them in school for a whole day next year rather than just half a day. Staff will take turns working with experienced ACES staff to progress their own PE skills through mentoring and feedback. Rook’s Nest staff will be teaching new sports during these sessions such as Lacrosse, curling and Tchoukball among others. The advice and support provided by ACES staff will prove invaluable when adding these new sports to our PE curriculum and enable staff to teach these new sports to an exceptional standard over the coming years. ACES staff will also be working with targeted children to improve their PE and self-health awareness over the coming year. These interventions started toward the end of last year and proved very successfully for a number of our children. The rest of our budget this year will be spent on a number of things, such as: Reintroducing ‘WOW days to inspire our children to participate in new sports, yoga (later in the year depending on Covid-19) and potentially an activity day(s) for year 6 if their residential to Robinwood cannot take place in April. We have chosen to put a proportion of the budget to one side this year, rather than decide how to use it all at once, so that we can see what happens with Covid-19 and respond to whatever situation arises accordingly – such as the year 6 residential.
This year the Academy will strive to continue to build on the successes of the past few years, whilst incorporating new activities and sports. We hope the recent excellent progress made in Outwood competitions continues to improve, whether competitions are held face to face or socially distanced, through the dedication and experience of coaches and teachers throughout the day.
As well as the above, this year we aim to continue to educate the children in the importance of outdoor education and develop self-awareness, confidence and self-esteem through working together actively outdoors. We also help to build collaborative-working and communication skills and develop a lifelong love of the outdoors through outdoor education. At Rooks Nest Academy we are determined to ensure that children continue to have the best possible physical education, despite Covid-19 and have the opportunity to maintain/regain a healthy lifestyle post lockdown.