Draft Curriculum for Wales - Sport Wales response

New curriculum can help schools be the beginning of a lifelong enjoyment of sport

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Sport Wales has welcomed the publication of the new draft curriculum in Wales and the focus on health and wellbeing at the heart of its approach.  The new curriculum will be radically different to the previous approach and Sport Wales believes that with the right training and support for teachers, it could provide the opportunity to refocus the priorities around physical activity and sport across the nation.

Sarah Powell, CEO of Sport Wales, said: "The changes to the curriculum present very important opportunities for the way we see physical activity and sport developed and prioritised within the educational setting. There will be 6 new areas of the curriculum with the new Health and Wellbeing Area of Learning and Experience being one of them. Central to this will be the requirement to ensure all children understand the importance of being active and are given a high-quality physical education offer, which raises not only their activity levels but increases their motivation, confidence and skills to be active both in and outside school.

"The Health, Social Care and Sport Committee report, recently published by the National Assembly for Wales, recommended 120 minutes of physical education in schools as a minimum statutory requirement. Along with the importance the new curriculum now places on children's levels of physical activity, this could be a real game changer in ensuring all children have a lifelong enjoyment of being active and supports the challenge to address the worrying childhood obesity trends we are seeing in Wales."

"We very much welcome the opportunity the new curriculum provides in ensuring all children are Physically Literate on leaving school. 

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Graham Williams, Director of Community Engagement at Sport Wales, added: "With the publication of the draft curriculum we now have the document which empowers schools to be able to ensure their approach will support healthy, enthused pupils with wellbeing at the heart of their focus.

"To go alongside this is a need to ensure that the teaching profession is equipped with the right skills to achieve this. Hand in hand with the new curriculum must be a commitment to professional development which supports those on the frontline to have the best chance to make this work.

"What is being proposed is a huge shift that will take time to be implemented.  However, if the challenge of that implementation is met with resource, collaboration and training then we can help make schools the proving grounds for an active nation where everyone can have a lifelong enjoyment of sport."