Government refuses call to review and refresh outdated physical education

07 December 2016

In a blow to children’s health and play campaigners this week, the Government has refused a call made by Baroness Floella Benjamin to review the school PE curriculum. 

The debate, which can be read in full here, saw Baroness Benjamin ask the Government what their long-term plan is for physical education as part of a holistic strategy for child health and well being. She has argued that PE teaching remains unchanged since the 1940s and as Britain has some of the most unfit children in the world, it is time to take a step in a different direction. She called for a review of PE teaching to ‘reset training for PE teachers’. The latest report from the All- Party Group on a Fit and Healthy Childhood shows the urgent need to revise the teaching of PE, if PE is to play a part in children’s wellbeing. 



PE teaching needs a shake up in the UK and by not doing so, the government are denying schools the opportunity to improve play and physical activity in their daily routine. The way that the subject is taught is currently outdated and, as the October report argued, implementing a standardised framework using best practice could help children and teachers who may be ‘scared’ of the subject. 

It is being argued that the subject has skipped a generation and lost its way. The state recommendations of two hours of PE a week are simply not enough and leaders have failed to keep the true core purpose for physical education. It has been suggested that this week’s debate has fallen on ‘deaf ears’.

Moving forwards it is up to schools to ensure that their students are receiving influential and impactful PE lessons. Incorporating more physical activity into the daily routine, as well as set aside time for physical education, is key for children’s health and wellbeing.

To find out how developing your outdoor space can help your school improve physical education and sports, book a consultation with one of our local advisors. 

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