Specialist Sports Colleges
Ashton on Mersey School has been a Sports College since 1998 and is currently in its third phase as a designated Specialist School. In 2005 our success as a Sports College and a High Performing School led to an invitation from the DFES to acquire additional Specialist status. Since this point we have also acquired Specialist Vocational College status.
Specialist Sports Colleges are at the hub of the Government’s strategy to enhance young people’s opportunities to participate in a wide range of sports as well as raising the standards of teaching and learning PE and school sport. Since our first phase designation in 1998 the school has used the focus of sport to raise attainment across the school and during this time we have developed a host of new initiatives, which have benefited the school and the local community.
Ashton on Mersey School is widely regarded as a lead practitioner in PE and Sport and has initiated a range of PE developments nationally. Most notably has been the schools development of Vocational Learning opportunities in PE. This has been developed through training and support programmes provided to schools nationally who use the BTEC Level 2 PE qualifications.
As a leading Specialist Sports College we have positioned PE and sport at the centre of the curriculum, using it as a vehicle to develop and improve learning opportunities for all. The school is confident that it meets all the Specialist School objectives for Sports Colleges which are:
- Raise the standard of teaching and learning in PE and throughout the school.
- Develop and foster links with other local schools.
- Provide the Government objective of two hours high quality PE per week, PSA Agreement.
- Share good practice.
- Be involved in all National Initiatives and competitions.
- Take a lead role in the Government PESSCL strategy.
- Host a SSCO Partnership.
The school also has since 2000 hosted the Trafford South School Sport Partnership. This exciting initiative has ensured that the number of young people involved in PE and sport across the Borough has accelerated. The programme is a thriving partnership including schools in the Trafford area.
P.E., School Sport and Young People (P.E.S.S.Y.P.)
The national PE, School Sport and Club Links strategy was launched by the Prime Minister in October 2002 and went live in April 2003. The Government invested £978m between 2003 – 04 and 2007 – 08 to deliver the strategy. In addition, £686m lottery funding is enhancing school sports facilities. That means that in total over £1.5 billion is being invested in physical education and school sport in the five years up to 2008. The DCSF and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport have come together to jointly lead the strategy.
The ambitious target was to increase the percentage of school children who spend a minimum of two hours a week on high quality PE and school sport within and beyond the curriculum to 75% by 2006 and 85% by 2008.
The 2006 target has already been beaten. The 2005/06 school sport survey found that 80% of pupils in the 16,800 schools taking part in the survey were spending at least two hours in a typical week on high quality PE and school sport. The long-term ambition by 2010 is to offer all children at least four hours of sport every week made up of:
- at least two hours of high quality PE and sport at schools with the expectation that this will be delivered totally within the curriculum.
- an additional two or more hours beyond the school day delivered by a range of school, community and club providers.