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£2.4m funding to encourage schools to open up sports facilities all year round

Following the national drive to inspire 60 minutes of physical activity per day across the week, the Education Secretary Gavin Williamson announced yesterday (Jan 26) a total of £2.4m in funding for better sports activities and teaching, plus 19 schools across different areas of England will have the opportunity to collaborate with sports organisations to increase the opportunities to use school sports facilities outside the school day.

The Active Partnership Network, supported by Sport England, will set up corporations between schools and local sport providers, encouraging them to open up their sport facilities for entertaining and engaging sporting competitions, after school clubs and holiday and holiday activities.

The new investment in school sports facilities builds on plans already established in the Sport and Activity Action Plan to provide safe and familiar environments for children to take part in activities that endorse good physical health and allow them to develop skills for the future, such as discipline and teamwork.

Schools have also been courage to promote their facilities for use outside of teaching hours, allowing them to generate additional sustainable income from leasing their premises to external organisations at affordable rates.

The fund, in partnership with sports charities Active Partnerships and Sport England, will create sporting opportunities across the country including in North Yorkshire and County Durham, Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes, Greater Manchester, London and Gloucestershire.

Gavin Williamson, Education Secretary said: “Getting children active from a young age helps them build confidence and learn skills they will use in later life. Many schools already open up their facilities so their communities can benefit and I want to encourage even more to do so.”

 “By backing schools with this extra money, we can make more fun activities available all year round - everything from football to dodgeball – to help children find a sport that they will enjoy and which will keep them healthy.”

Sports Minister Nigel Adams said: “It is absolutely right that every child, regardless of background, has the chance to learn how to run, jump, throw, and catch to develop a healthy lifestyle

“The 2022 Commonwealth Games will not just be about two weeks of sport: it will open up a wealth of opportunities for people across the West Midlands, leaving a lasting sporting legacy for the region. So, I encourage young people to make the most of these opportunities, particularly by getting involved in community sport.”

Health Minister Jo Churchill said: “We all know that exercise has huge benefits for both our physical and mental health - this is especially important for our children and young people as they grow and develop.

“Sports and physical activity can inspire and empower young people to fulfil their potential and live longer, healthier lives, and it’s fun. This fantastic investment will ensure thousands more children have access to the right facilities.”


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