A Hartlepool primary school has landed a gold award for its commitment to school games and physical activity.
Brougham Primary School – one of eight primary schools under the umbrella of Ad Astra Academy Trust – has achieved the national School Games Gold Mark Award.
The School Games Mark is a government-led award scheme launched in 2012, facilitated by the Youth Sport Trust to reward and recognise school participation in school games.
Keighley Bradford, a teacher at the school has led on the initiative with support from teaching assistant Jenn Hopkins.
Keighley said: “Everyone associated with the school is thrilled to bits with the Gold Mark Award. Last year we were awarded the Bronze Mark Award, so this is a significant achievement.
“Children at Brougham enjoy a wide range of sporting experiences both within school and beyond. We teach the importance of exercise and encourage our children to be active for 60 minutes every day.
“This is carefully planned into our timetables through active break times and lunchtimes and with the launch of our SKip2BFit programme.
“We have placed a great emphasis on internal and inter school competition allowing children at Brougham to increase their confidence and competence in a range of sports.
“We also understand the importance of parental involvement to help promote sport and exercise, so we regularly communicate our sporting programmes to parents through newsletters and social media posts.
“Achieving the Gold School Games Mark has been a real team effort to ensure that sport is embedded throughout the curriculum and in extra-curricular activities.”
Keighley also praised The Collective Cluster – a group of schools in Hartlepool that promote involvement in sport and physical activity, Hartlepool Athletics Club and John Spence, a local strength and conditioning coach for the roles they played in helping to achieve gold.
Sarah Greenan, Headteacher of Brougham Primary School, added: “We are delighted to have achieved the Gold School Games Sports Award, which recognises our ongoing commitment to promoting physical education throughout the school.
“All pupils in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 receive a minimum of two hours physical education per week to raise the profile of sport and exercise. We also provide lots of sporting opportunities for pupils and work with local clubs such as Hartlepool Athletics Club to ensure that pupils access high quality teaching and coaching as part of the curriculum.
“I am extremely proud of our pupils and staff for their dedication to all aspects of physical activity and school sport, including the young volunteers, leaders and officials who help make our many events possible.”
Jonny Murray, the Collective Cluster lead, commented: “It has been fantastic working with Brougham Primary School over the last five years, the progress they have made in Sport and PE is outstanding.
“Brougham has worked very hard to embed a new culture of sport in their school, they ensure that no child gets left behind, and all children have the opportunity to excel in sport.
“The Gold School Games Award is very much well deserved. Mrs Bradford and her team have done a great job and put a lot of hard work in.”
There are seven other primary schools within Ad Astra Academy Trust. They are Barnard Grove, West Park and West View in Hartlepool, Crooksbarn and Rosebrook in Stockton-on-Tees and Ayresome and Sunnyside in Middlesbrough.
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