Return to School

Welcome back to the 2021/22 academic year. We hope more than anything that this year is a fresh new start for all pupils as well as the leaders, educators and all staff working within schools.

We know that there are still challenges ahead as you adapt to more changes, but we hope for more stability and ever-increasing clarity about what happens next.

We would like to thank all of you for your hard work to keep young people physically active and physically educated over the past two academic years. We know that young people have missed out on so much, but one of the greatest impacts has been on their physical and mental health. We are committed to creating a positive future, filled with lessons learnt and new opportunities. We don’t want the term “the COVID generation” to be synonymous with poor physical health, lost social connections, and ever declining mental health. What if this is the first generation who truly understand the value of:

• physical activity on their health
• face to face connections because they know what it feels like to lose them
• physical literacy
• having good mental health and the experience and resilience to take positive action to keep themselves well
• the role of PE in providing the building blocks for physical, social and emotional health for life

The road ahead isn’t easy or straightforward, there will be challenges and bumps along the way. We know we enter this time carrying the bruises and scars of the battles we have already faced but if we unite, support each other and commit to carrying some of the load when it gets too much, we will empower a generation of young people to be so much more than we ever dreamed.

We hope the year ahead for your pupils is an exciting time; a time for next steps, new opportunities and, for some, a fresh start. We know your priority will be to support all young people to settle back quickly and ensure they are in the best position to achieve. Please see here for more information on some principles to consider on the return to school.

From all of us at the Youth Sport Trust, we wish you a successful academic year filled with hope, opportunities and lots of high-quality PE and school sport.

Published on 9 September 2021