Gold School Games Mark awarded to Upton Junior School

Upton gold award with Callum Noble, left, pupils and Aiden McCollum, right

Upton Junior School in Broadstairs is pure gold when it comes to providing five star PE and games opportunities.

The Gold School Games Mark that recognises excellence is the latest acclaim for the school that is renowned for its sports provision for children of all ages and abilities, and which was recently further strengthened by the addition of a purpose-built multi-use sports hall for pupils and the wider community.

The School Games Mark is a government-led awards scheme launched in 2012 to reward schools for their commitment to the development of competition across their school and into the community. Participating in this process allows schools to evaluate their PE provision and assists them in developing an action plan for future progress.

The award focuses on differing criteria, including participation in sporting activity, how many different sports are being played and how many competitions are being entered; and how many pupils are involved in leadership activities alongside taking part in competitions.

Deputy Head of School Dave Walker said: “Upton continues to strive for sporting success and we will build on this success this academic year. I look forward to seeing the extra opportunities the new sports hall will bring.”

PE co-ordinator and Year 4 teacher Cheska Rees added: “Upton has a long history of sporting success and I am extremely proud that this has carried on despite the difficulties Covid has seen us face.”

The team also includes Sports Lead Callum Noble and Sports Apprentice Aiden McCollum who said: “Fitness, physical health and wellbeing are important for our girls and boys and they enjoy a varied range of activities to suit their needs in lessons that are challenging and fun.”

Prior to the Covid pandemic restrictions Upton held the Platinum Kitemark, awarded for five consecutive Gold Awards. Like all schools, provision is constantly building once again.

Upton runs 30 differing sports clubs each year and hosts a number of key events in the school sports calendar. The school benefits from having a swimming pool onsite so all pupils can learn to swim weekly as part of PE, the new sports hall will increase opportunity for pupils, and large grounds that are used to host a number of key events in the local sports calendar.

More than 2000 children from local schools take part in a sports event hosted by Upton in a regular year, including the recent Upton cross-country which had over 600 participants from local schools.  Each week there are more than 300 pupils at one of the sports clubs run at school.