During 2017 - 2018, we identified that we had a significant number of girls who were not engaging in physical activity both at school and at home. All Key Stage 2 pupils were surveyed to identify barriers to engagement and we dedicated an amount of money from the PE Premium to target these girls.
The main reason we want to help this group of girls (as well as all pupils) is to improve their self-esteem. Having met with all girls from Key Stage 2, we quickly identified that the biggest barriers preventing them from attending an after school club or wanting to be physically active outside of school was a lack of confidence, friends not participating and low self-esteem - not believing they were good enough.
We invited Cornwall Healthy Schools in to deliver training to Mrs Dennison (PE Lead), Mr Timmons, our sports coach, and eight other members of staff who are TAs and lunchtime supervisors. Mrs Dennison has also attended the Youth Sport Trust Girls Active training with three pupils who came away inspired and trained as ambassadors for physical activity. They have delivered their training to other girls selected by interview process who, as a team, have begun their campaign to engage girls from across the whole school.
Our GALs (Girls Active Leaders) have begun their poster campaign and organised some events for mothers and daughters such as a street dance class at Penwith Leisure Centre and tennis sessions at Penzance Tennis Club as well as a hugely successful entry in the Race for Life in which over sixty girls, mums and female staff took part. The GALs lead our campaign, delivering training, organising events and leading activity sessions. The girls have also completed another survey from the Youth Sport Trust providing us with baseline data that will show what impact their campaign has.
Mr Timmons has been working with fifteen key girls who we felt would benefit from small group coaching. Over the six sessions, the girls learnt key fundamental skills through a range of alternative sports such as boccia. They also represented the school at an alternative sports festival which we hope will boost confidence and raise self-esteem. This has been extended and Mr Timmons now runs weekly "Girls Only" sessions for girls in Years 3 and 4.
The girls identified that they would like time to practise key sports, as the boys do, during playtimes and lunchtimes. We therefore now have a section of the playground which is for girls only. This has been hugely popular and the girls are able to practise a range of sports such as netball, basketball and football.
Another issue raised was that the girls would like to able to wear jogging bottoms during PE lessons and feel that the sports kit we have is not particularly ‘girly’. We have therefore applied for grants to receive some kit, which the girls can choose. We will also look at our PE kit and think about how we can make it more appealing to girls.