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- 13 August 2014 00:00
- in Education
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- Last Modified: 13 August 2014 06:08
The Premier League has announced a three-year programme of support for primary school sport across the country that will see an investment of £10.5 million.
The programme will see the Premier League and other professional clubs provide community coaches to deliver fun, high-quality and age-appropriate PE and sport sessions in schools.
They will also provide a pathway into competitive football opportunities for those that want them.
The £10.5 million investment will see the project rolled out in 67 Premier League and Football League clubs, providing opportunities for thousands more PE lessons to be delivered by our club coaches in England and Wales.
The Premier League state that the quality and sustainability of the programme is critical to its success with a total of 612 club coaches working towards accredited school sport qualifications (Level 3 Supporting PE and School Sport accreditation) and 285 teachers having received Premier League training to deliver PE sessions to create a long-term legacy for schools.
Children and Families Minister Edward Timpson has welcomed the new investment.
"Instilling PE and sport in a child’s life as early as possible can bring enormous benefits and can really help set them up to stay fit and healthy for life,” said Timpson.
"One of this Government’s key objectives is to improve the quality of PE and school sport both through the primary PE and sport premium and through building better community links between schools and local clubs.
"This approach gives schools the opportunity to invest sustainably in staff development.”
The new investment comes after the Premier League piloted the programme last season and 25 clubs (20 Premier League clubs and five Football League clubs) delivered more than 66,000 PE lessons and sport sessions in 1,279 schools to over 103,000 pupils.
Premier League CEO Richard Scudamore explained that the high-quality football put on by the League clubs allows the organisation to invest in and support community sports facilities, school sport and a variety of sports participation projects.
"Investing in the primary school sector, where everything begins, is a perfect fit with our overarching strategy of aiming to get more young people playing sport," Scudamore said.
"The success of the first year of this initiative – with 66,000 PE lessons delivered by our club coaches - has given clubs the confidence to roll it out further and complement the huge amount of work they are already doing in the secondary school sector."