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Year of sporting success capped with national award win

A successful year of sporting achievement has been capped by the news of a coveted national award for Bothal Primary School.

Staff and students have been celebrating after the school received notification it had reached the Platinum standard in the School Games Mark awards.

Only one in six schools who enter the scheme attain the top award, needing to have been successful in the bronze, silver or gold categories for five consecutive years to be eligible.

The school also had to submit a paper outlining how it met the platinum standard, setting out its extensive physical activity provision.

Ashington Learning Partnership’s PE Lead Adam Nicholson said: “We have qualified and passionate specialised physical education teachers who deliver a wide variety of activities including team sports, individual pursuits, dance, swimming and gymnastics.

“Through these activities, we aim to develop our students’ fundamental movement skills, enhance their physical fitness, and foster a love for physical activity.

“Additionally, we have established partnerships with local sports clubs and organisations to further enrich our students’ physical literacy experiences and re-established stronger community, county and English school level links.

“These partnerships provide opportunities for our students to participate in a variety of sports, such as football, cricket, swimming and athletics. By engaging with external experts, our students gain exposure to different coaching styles, develop new skills, and broaden their sporting horizons.”

This work has certainly paid off – sporting achievements this year in the East Northumberland and Berwick Schools FA include:

  • Finalists in the U11 Girls 7-a-side County Qualifier Tournament
  • A Year 5 girl was selected for the County U11 Girls’ football squad and Sunderland AFC Women’s development section
  • U11 Boys County Cup quarter finalists
  • U11 Boys 9-a-side League – third in Steven Tait Trophy

A Year 6 Central team also won the North-East Multiskill games competition and a Year 5 Bothal team were runners-up.

Adam added: “We have a successful PE curriculum covering a broad spectrum of areas to give children the greatest experience of PE. We run ALP Play every lunch which focuses on a variety of essential skills for the children to explore a variety of stations, from STEM to creative to sport.

“We also managed to get all children at the upper site to an extra curriculum club last year and had great success in sport.”

The Trust’s other school – Central Primary – met the gold standard in the School Games Mark last time and is going for platinum this year.