Stcuthberts 7 1

Active Schools On The Up

School sport across Scotland continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic

Over the past academic year (2022/2023), we have seen participation levels in Active Schools programmes across Scotland show a significant increase, with 4.5million visits this year, a 34% rise from 2021/22. The number of participants, sessions, deliverers and club/school links also increased over the last year. 

Active Schools programmes across the country only resumed last year (2021/22) after being significantly impacted by COVID-19 public health measures and protections, with local authorities prioritising the delivery of core education in schools. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, Active Schools is now showing strong signs of recovery.

Full Active Schools Data 

Chief Executive of sportscotland, Forbes Dunlop, said: “The Active Schools network is a hugely important part of Scotland’ sporting system. For many young people it is where their sporting journey begins, so we are pleased to see participation levels rise again.

While we are still not at pre-pandemic levels, we are now starting to see very strong signs of recovery and we will continue to support our partners in all 32 local authorities to ensure that the progress made over the past 12 months continues across this academic year."

Active Schools aims to provide more and higher quality opportunities to take part in sport and physical activity before school, during lunchtime and after school, and to develop effective pathways between schools and sports clubs in the local community. It is delivered in partnership between sportscotland and all 32 local authorities.

Gold for St Cuthbert's 

Sports Minister Maree Todd visited St Cuthbert’s Roman Catholic Primary School in Edinburgh as details of the latest Active Schools data were published. St Cuthbert’s is the latest school in the country to receive a gold sportscotland School Sport Award in recognition of its outstanding commitment to sport and physical activity.   

Ms Todd said: “I was very pleased to be able to present the children of St Cuthbert’s Primary School with their gold sportscotland School Sport Award. The children and teachers are all so passionate about sport and physical activity and the many benefits that participation brings.

“It’s fantastic that Active Schools participation has risen significantly since last year. This important programme provides children with opportunities to take part in sport before, during and after school. That’s why the Scottish Government and sportscotland are working together to ensure that Active Schools programmes will be free for all children and young people by the end of this Parliament.”

St Cuthbert’s operates free daily sports clubs ensuring children and young people in most need including the inactive, those living in poverty, with an additional support need, those with a disability, girls and those who are care experienced or in kinship care can take part in Active Schools clubs.

The school is committed to developing young people as leaders in sport, recognising and valuing the important contribution they can make. The school benefits from sports leaders with the school sports committee made up of young people from across each year group who have been instrumental in securing the gold sportscotland School Sport Award.

Funded by the National Lottery, the School Sport Award is presented for innovation and achievement in delivering school sport and physical activity. It recognises schools that put young people at the forefront of decision making and planning of school sport and PE, while also increasing participation opportunities.

Head teacher of St Cuthbert’s Pat Brack, said: “Being active is one of our key school values and as a school which has recently become a Gold standard Rights Respecting School, we also really value our pupils’ right to play and to maximise their talents. Consequently, we have been really pleased to see the increase in active school clubs and in school sporting activities catering to a wide range of interests and cultures that we have affected over the last few years.

This couldn’t have been done without the amazing support we have received from our Active Schools Coordinator. Receiving the Gold Sports Award flag today is a real accolade and is a just reward for the hard work of our pupils and staff, ably supported by our parents and carers.”

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