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SSP Alert!

Happy New Year & Welcome Back!

I have had a fantastic first week working in the partnership. We have welcomed Emma back from maternity leave, which has been extremely beneficial for me as she is a font of knowledge for all things NOSSP so has been answering my questions all week!

I enjoyed meeting our team of SSCO’s and PE mentors. I was impressed with their knowledge, enthusiasm and passion for all things PE, sport, health and wellbeing and I am sure they will continue to have a very positive impact improving the opportunities for the young people in our area.

Speaking with colleagues from the Youth Sport Trust it is very clear that the work done in North Oxfordshire over the course of the last 14 years under Carl’s tremendous leadership is rightly held in high regard and I feel very proud and privileged to take the baton from him. Now however, is not a time to rest on our laurels. With an ever changing social and political landscape we must continue to put the health and wellbeing of young people at the forefront of our minds. Ensuring our young people are active, healthy, happy and successful is the biggest motivator for us in education.

The national picture of physical activity and health is not in a good place. Recent government statistics show that only 18% of 5-16 year olds are meeting the expected bench mark of 60 minutes’ physical activity a day with more than a third of young people achieving less than 30 active minutes. Couple this with a continued growth in obesity and a sharp rise in mental illness in our young people we are at a potential tipping point. Whilst the figures in our local area would be more positive it is clear that there is much still to be done.

I have been heartened by the recent communications from Amanda Speilman (Ofsted Chief Inspector) who has spoken passionately about the needs of schools to focus their attention on the “whole person” and it is clear she feels that PE, sport and physical activity have a huge part to play in this development. The new Ofsted framework is likely to demand a return to a “broad” curriculum, which will rightly see high quality Physical Education return as a cornerstone of any good school.

I firmly believe that healthy and active young people will have the best chance of successful futures. Recent research from Sport England and the Youth Sport Trust shows there is a clear and tangible link between our most active young people and academic success. The research shows that those most active students are much more likely to achieve better outcomes at both Key Stage 2 SATs and Progress 8 at GCSE. This is something I am sure all schools will consider moving forwards.

We all have a fantastic opportunity through our schools, networks and the SSP itself to improve the lives of young people. I look forward to working with you all as we relentlessly drive towards this goal.

I would like to take his opportunity to wish you a belated Happy New Year and wish you a healthy and active 2019!

Dean Woodham

NOSSP Partnership Manager

North Oxfordshire School Sport Partnership
Blessed George Napier Sports College


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