£150m allocated to schools – bid to increase physical activity.

£150m has recently been allocated to school sport and PE by the government. This funding is to be handed over to schools in order to provide extra coaching sessions to up-skill school staff.

This brand new scheme is set to provide:

  • £9,250 per year to primary schools with 250 pupils.
  • Tougher Ofsted inspections to ensure the money has been well spent.
  • More specialist PE teachers via teacher training.
  • Help for linking schools to local coaches and clubs.

The government have been discussing these plans for months after an obvious desire for increased sporting activity had arisen throughout the education sector. It follows reports from Ofsted after a 4 year long investigation, which states that school sport is not at the standard it should be.

Much criticism was pointed towards the government in 2010 after £162m worth of funding was abolished. Schools will be pleased at the new funding opportunity so here’s hoping the government don’t change their minds again.

ESP and the improvement of school sport.

ESP fully support the idea of up-skilling staff and, alongside providing a wide range of playground equipment and markings, we also provide CPD training to school staff in order to improve the teaching of school sport. Our multi-skills concept has been proven to increase the abilities of children across a number of sporting activities. Our training programs provide the appropriate coaching to support this. More information can be found on our page on CPD training.



ESP discuss recent PE Ofsted reports.

This week, Ofsted released its latest reports on school sport across England. On the whole, the results are positive, stating that PE is in ‘good health’. However, concerns have been raised over the lack of quality of PE lessons in some schools and in particular, Primary schools. This is largely due to the absence of adequate training resulting in a lack of confidence and competence amongst staff members. It has been said that lessons are not active enough. Staff are talking more than necessary and children have less time to become physically challenged.

ESP have recognised this lack of training for many years and through their own CPD training programs and multi-skills concepts they offer a number of solutions. This has proved to be extremely popular amongst primary schools throughout the country who are keen to tackle the problem of poor PE lessons. The CPD training receives widespread praise and ESP are pleased to have helped breathe a breath of fresh air into school sport. The main aim of CPD training is to directly improve PE lessons and with current Ofsted reports, this is invaluable to schools.

Schools looking to improve their PE lessons are advised to employ our multi-skills concept into their outdoor play areas. These playground markings provide a platform to build upon fundamental movement skills appropriate to all sports. With multi-skills games children are able to practice throwing, catching, jumping, twisting, running, walking and more. The Famous Five Multi-Skills package comes supplied with CPD training to up-skill staff and add sustainability to the products.

The warning signs provided by Ofsted should not be taken lightly. It’s time to make improvements to secure the health and wellbeing of children and to take the steps required to impress Ofsted. The current reports are good ‘on the whole’, but is this really good enough?


ESP and the Green-Flag campaign

Playground Equipment company now providing products to assist with energy saving

ESP have recently introduced a range of energy saving products, providing schools with a framework for making sustainability a big part of their lives. With many schools aiming for a green flag award, the company have decided to assist with this.

Due to growing concerns with the overuse and expense of natural energy sources, schools are frequently encouraged to implement as many energy saving methods as possible. Both upper and lower schools are looking at ways to economise their spending and make best use of their resources. This has motivated ESP to include energy sustainable items into their product catalogue. Alongside low energy electronics (such as lightbulbs), solar panels and wind turbines are available to generate extra electricity and cut down on CO2 emissions. Self-sustainable floodlighting requires no external energy source as it creates its own solar power.

All of these new products are directly aimed at assisting schools looking to gain a green flag award. The award criteria states that one of the school’s chosen topics MUST be geared towards energy saving. ESP have taken this into account and have carefully chosen products which make significant contributions towards the schools green flag action plan.

Energy Saving Actions

  • Replace failing lamps.
  • Changing to low energy bulbs.
  • Installing solar panels or wind power turbines.
  • Installing self-sustainable floodlighting.

How can your school benefit from energy saving products?

  • Reduced costs resulting in more funds for school spending.
  • Curriculum learning.
  • Improved comfort conditions.
  • Pupil action and awareness.
  • Pupils taking power saving concepts home with them.
  • A good school image.

ESP now provide products suited for all of the above. For a free site survey and quote, please contact us on 01282 434445 or via the contact page.


Are primary school children becoming ‘physically illiterate’?

Susan Campbell expresses concerns about the physical activity of primary school children.

Susan Campbell, the head of UK Sport, has recently expressed concerns over the health of 11 year olds moving onto secondary schools. She claims many children are ‘physically illiterate’ and unable to run, jump, throw or catch – all the fundamental movement skills of sport. She claims many primary school teachers lack the confidence to teach PE as they have not had the proper training and therefore are not specialist PE teachers.

ESP Multi-skills

We applaud Sue for bringing this to the public eye but at ESP we know this is nothing new. For years we have been addressing the situation and investing in extensive research on how to build the vocabulary of skills required to participate confidently and competently in sport. Our multi-skills zone was subject to a range of independent research carried out by Roehampton University, Leeds Metropolitan University and Liverpool University which confirms:

  • Proven increases in levels of physical activity.
  • Substantial improvements in fundamental movement skills such as catching, kicking, throwing and running.
  • Proven increases in the participation in sport.

Ask any school who has taken advantage of our multi-skills packages and they won’t be telling you that their pupils are ‘physically illiterate’.

Our multi-skills playground markings were designed to engage children in activities which build upon their fundamental movement skills, such as those mentioned in Sue’s speech. These skills can be applied to a number of sports, whilst many of the activities also incorporate cross-curricular links and provide a whole school benefit.

The success of our multi-skills zone is due to the range of CPD training awards that we actively deliver to non-specialist teachers in order to increase their knowledge and know how to deliver effective physical education lessons. The professional development board of afPE have nationally accredited our multi-skills training awards and continue to assist us in the quality assurance of the delivery. Delegate evaluations confirm that our CPD training awards are informative and inspirational. These sessions provide staff with solutions to teach fundamental movement skills to children. When the time comes, children will be ready for the big shift to secondary sport.

You can read the full report here.


Multi-Skills Playground Markings at Little Ealing School

Little Ealing Primary School, Weymouth Avenue, London, W5 4EA

ESP have recently worked with Little Ealing Primary to add multi-skills activity to the playground area. We implemented our multi-skills markings to allow children to practice skills applicable to a wide range of sporting activity.

The school were keen to see an increase in physical activity and these markings were an excellent choice for this purpose. With a wide choice of games and a multitude of uses, the children can set goals to their own ability while pushing themselves to improve. Teachers also see benefits across the curriculum too, as these playground markings can be used to take lessons outdoors. A variety of numeracy and literacy games are all possible and are great fun for the children. Physical activity is a great way to engross the children in learning. More and more schools throughout the country are deciding to to take this rewarding route and are pleased with the results.

Alongside the Famous 5 Multi-Skills markings, the school also chose to include a netball court.

Included Multi-skills Playground Markings
  • Fast Feet
  • Nine Square Grid
  • Target Trainer
  • Ring Step
  • Multi-Step Column

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