22.02.2021 - Update:
The DfE have clarified guidance on physical activity in schools, which varies little from the measures educational establishments were using in the Autumn term.
This gives each school, college or academy the flexibility to decide how physical education, sport, and physical activity will be provided within the framework of the following measures in their system of controls:
- Pupils should be kept in consistent groups
- Sports equipment must be thoroughly cleaned between each use by different individual groups.
- Outdoor sports should be prioritised where possible, and large indoor spaces used where it is not, maximising natural ventilation flows (through opening windows and doors or using air conditioning systems wherever possible), distancing between pupils, and paying scrupulous attention to cleaning and hygiene. This is particularly important in a sport setting because of the way in which people breathe during exercise. External facilities can also be used in line with government guidance for the use of, and travel to and from, those facilities.
- You can hold PE lessons indoors, including those that involve activities related to team sports, for example practising specific techniques, within their own system of controls.
- Where you are considering team sports you should only consider those sports whose national governing bodies have developed guidance under the principles of the government’s guidance on team sport and been approved by the government i.e. sports on the list available in the existing guidance: grassroots sports guidance for safe provision, including team sport, contact combat sport, and organised sport events.
- Competition between different schools should not take place until wider grassroots sport for under 18s is permitted, currently slated for 29 March at the earliest.
- You can work with external coaches, clubs and organisations for curricular and extra-curricular activities. You must be satisfied that it is safe to do. In order to do this we will undertake a risk assessment for each activity.
Activities such as active miles, making break times and lessons active and encouraging active travel can help pupils to be physically active while encouraging physical distancing.
In addition, when risk assessing our provision, we refer to:
• guidance on grass-root sports for public and sport providers, safe provision and facilities, and guidance from Sport England
• advice from organisations such as the Association for Physical Education and the Youth Sport Trust