King Alfred’s has become one of the first schools in England to win a new national award for making a commitment to develop its students to be the best they can be in competitive school sport.
King Alfred’s Academy was one of only 104 schools in the country to receive the special School Games Platinum Award. The Award is part of the School Games Mark, a government led awards scheme launched in 2012 and administered by national charity the Youth Sport Trust, which had close to 9,000 applicants this year. Its aim is to reward schools for a commitment to the development of competition across schools and into the community.
Participating in this process allows schools to evaluate their PE provision, grading them either Bronze, Silver or Gold, and assists schools in developing an action plan for future progress. The Platinum Award is the new fourth level of the award scheme, introduced earlier this year to celebrate schools who had shown consistently high levels of enthusiasm and commitment to school sport. Applications are only open to those schools who achieved five successive Gold awards.
To achieve the Gold award a school must meet a certain set of criteria, which includes engaging a high percentage of young people in both curricular and extracurricular activities, participating in a minimum number of competitions across different sports, and reaching out to target groups including young leaders, volunteers, and those previously identified as the school’s least-active pupils.
Jo Halliday, Headteacher at King Alfred’s said: “This award bears out just how dedicated our PE Teaching Team are in pursuit of excellence on behalf of our students. They give 100% each and every day and are inspirational as role models to our students. I know the whole Academy will join me in conveying our heartiest congratulations”.
Ali Oliver, Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust, said: “We are pleased to introduce the new Platinum Award this year to give these exemplary schools the recognition which they deserve. We are extremely proud of all our award winners for the passion which they have shown towards the School Games and their dedication to providing opportunities for all young people to take part in competitive school sport.
At a time when young people are becoming less healthy and less active, the School Games provides opportunities for millions across the country to participate in sport and reap the benefits of an active lifestyle both on and off the field. Schools like King Alfred’s are really leading the way.”