Education Secretary makes drive for more competitive school sport

YST responds to Damian Hinds’ competitive school sport pledge.

Article from the Youth Sport Trust’s website.

Responding to Education Secretary Damian Hinds’ Conservative Party Conference Speech announcing a new cross-government School Sport Action Plan, Youth Sport Trust Chief Executive Ali Oliver said:

“It is hugely encouraging that the Secretary of State is so passionate about the importance of school sport and the contribution competition can make to the development of essential character traits such as grit, resilience and responsibility to others, while offering young people the opportunity to find fun, friendship and a sense of belonging. These are beliefs the Youth Sport Trust holds dear.

“At a time when children’s physical and mental health and social development are very real priorities for schools and society, the pivotal role that sport can play in nurturing their development has never been more essential.

“Through the School Games – one of the great legacies of London 2012 backed by the government and National Lottery investment – more than two million young people across 21,000 schools get the opportunity to participate in competitive sport every year. The Youth Sport Trust has been privileged to implement this through the endless hard work of the national network of School Games Organisers.

“We welcome this extended commitment by government to help us build on the foundations of this successful programme. This will be great news for young people and warmly welcomed by school leaders.”

“At the Youth Sport Trust we passionately believe in the potential of a more joined up approach to youth sport across government. A cross-department action plan focused on getting more children active, growing competitive sport, and maximising the role sport can play in improving health, developing character, and raising academic achievement will make a real impact tackling some of the big issues facing this generation of young people.

“We congratulate the Secretary of State on such a bold and positive step and look forward to supporting him in realising his ambitions.