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Enhancing physical education provision and improving access to sport and physical activity in school

Calthorpe Academy has been chosen by the DfE to be part of 'Enhancing physical education provision and improving access to sport and physical activity in school guidance.'

To demonstrate, Calthorpe Academy, a special school in Birmingham, caters to children aged 2-19. With 440 pupils and 300 staff, with the majority involved in PE and physical activity within the school community, the school emphasises active learning, improved external environments, and strong links with community groups. Parental engagement is excellent, and staff CPD is a priority, evident in the well-delivered teaching and support partly funded by the PE and sport premium.

The staff development programme provides internal and external opportunities, such as Makaton communication training for PE lessons. The school’s CPD programme ensures that staff receive effective support which leads to learners being more engaged in PE, displaying faster progress, reducing challenging behaviours, and delivering higher pupil satisfaction levels. The school concentrates on physical and social development to help young people regulate themselves, which are embedded through strategies such as active learning, brain breaks, and sensory circuits. The school's holistic approach extends to intra-school activities, off-site competitions, and promoting physical and mental well-being.

The reward system enhances participation, and learners with limitations contribute positively, showcasing leadership skills. Additionally, the school have reported that the introduction of equipment at lunchtimes funded by the PE and sport premium has reduced negative behaviour issues, improved pupil’s social skills, encouraged greater participation and increased active minutes.