Active Essex Winter School Games
Almost 700 pupils from primary and secondary schools across the county have been competing in a range of sporting activities during the Active Essex Winter School Games at the University of Essex.
The competition is open to both primary and secondary schools who have won district level competitions in one of six different sports, from basketball and badminton to squash and individual table tennis, and is one of three annual large-scale School Games events.
The festival of sport ran throughout January at venues across Colchester and Rochford, with over 50 schools taking part in the sports events, supported by 10 Young Leaders and four Royal Foundation ‘Coach Core’ Apprentices.
Gregory Wilson, PE teacher at FitzWimarc School in Rayleigh, said: “The Schools Games give a chance for children to try new sports and it’s good to see smiles on their faces and enjoying themselves.
“We saw some great successes from our pupils hard work.”
Eleanor Gibbons, a PE teacher at Shenfield High School in Brentwood, said: “The School Games is really important to our school because we have so many children that participate in sport at our school.
“We find that sport is important not only for participation levels but also for performance, so we love being part of the School Games.”
The Winter Games is part of wider school sports programme designed to engage with children and inspire them to lead healthy and active lifestyles.
This, amongst other educational activities such as the ‘Daily Mile’, is part of the four-year strategy by Active Essex which aims to change one million lives by getting Essex active.
Paul May, PE Teachers at Chelmsford County High School, said: “We’ve entered the School Games because it’s a great opportunity to have some competitive badminton.
“Our students were absolutely delighted to attend and look forward to it every year. It is a really exciting event for them and they all train hard for it in school and out of school. ”
Dawn Emberson, Relationship Manager (South) at Active Essex, said: “School Games help encourage physical activity amongst pupils because there’s something for everyone.
“The journey through the School Games has something for everyone. Everyone has their chance to progress and find something they’re good at.
“We encourage all pupils to try and find a sport or hobby they love and hopefully continue to play for the rest of their lives. That why its great having these games as it encourages children to stick at something.”