St Edward’s CE Academy, Cheddleton, has been awarded a prestigious Quality Mark from the Association for Physical Education (afPE). This is for its devotion to pupil’s health and wellbeing through a development of curriculum and school day activities.

The afPE Quality Mark evidences the strength and quality of Physical Education, School Sport and Physical Activity (PESSPA) in schools.

We encourage our Academies to provide a stimulating, varied and broad education. And so, our Academies share our vision to achieve better outcomes for all our young people by delivering a skills-based curriculum that is tailored to individual learning needs.

Staff at St Edward’s CE Academy continuously develop the Physical Education programme and have implemented activities into classes and break times which supports the pupils in improving their health and wellbeing.

Jason Carter, Head of Physical Education at St Edward’s CE Academy, said: “Without regular breaks, pupils can experience aching hands and waning concentration.

“Therefore, I’ve developed ‘Active 15’ which encourages all classes to introduce intermissions throughout the day to get the children up and moving.

“Activities include practising breathing techniques, star jump exercises and short dance sequences.”

Sue Wilkinson MBE, the afPE Chief Executive Officer, wrote a letter to St Edward’s CE Academy to congratulate the noteworthy achievement: “The school has a comprehensive curriculum in place that offers pupils a broad and balanced experience.

“There’s a strong assessment system in place which is utilised well across the school to ensure pupils are making good progress.

“Over the last few years, the school has trained staff members through various CPD opportunities and continues to monitor and develop through further courses and in-house coaching opportunities.

“They use education, physical activity and outdoor learning as a tool for whole school improvements. This includes academic engagement and achievement, improved behaviour and attendance as well as to enhance learning in other areas of the curriculum.”

Jason said: “Achieving the prestigious afPE Quality mark, with distinction, is a fantastic achievement for St Edward’s CE Academy.

“Completing the application has showcased the vast opportunities for the children to develop physically, emotionally and socially at the school. Everyone at the school, from Governors, staff and the pupils, have worked hard to implement and embed a range of different initiatives and it’s brilliant to see this recognised.”

St Edward’s CE Academy strongly supports CPD for its staff, the teachers have received training through a Forestry School and Orienteering course which supports the Academy’s cross-curricular outdoor lessons.

St Edward's children playing

Anne Hordern, Assistant Principal at St Edward’s CE Academy, commented: “We’re extremely lucky to have extensive wooded grounds for the children to explore.

“We’ve developed the area using the Academy’s Sports Premium grant which now provides a fantastic range of opportunities for the children to enjoy, including ninja ropes, willow dens, hanging chairs, archery equipment and orienteering routes.”

Pupils at St Edward’s CE Academy are split into groups and allocated different areas to spend their breaktimes, fully utilising the abundance of green space.

Anne continued: “The developments mean we’ve seen far less arguing among the children as they’re happier and healthier.

“The Academy is now truly a better place for all children and staff because of the changes and reflects the visions that SUAT has for its Academies.”

Sue Machin, Principal of St Edwards CE Academy, wrote: “The Academy’s lunchtime developments see pupils accessing a wide range of activities to develop their skills.

“It’s evident from the visit how much pupils enjoyed these. Improving their physical activity levels and developing key skills such as teamwork through playing playground games co-operatively.”

We are pleased to say that the Academy’s award is valid for three years and will inspire all our Academies to strive to deliver outstanding education so that maximum progress by the pupils can be made.

St Edward’s CE Academy has also been presented with an engraved plaque to commemorate the achievement, while being listed on the afPE Quality Mark webpage.

If you are interested in joining our Trust that encourages and supports change for a safer environment for all pupils and staff, contact us today.