The Government have published new figures on the Sainsbury's School Games for the 2013/14 academic year which reveal the event is delivering a huge return on investment.
Statistics released from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport show that £21.95 million of public funding was invested in the Sainsbury's School Games across 2013/14.
A total of 17,800 schools, with 7.09 million eligible students, participated in the event over the academic year.
This equates to an average public sector cost of £3.10 per eligible student at the Sainsbury's School Games.
The statistics show a far bigger return on investment than the 2012/13 academic year, where the average cost per child was £9.43.
Last year, a total of 13,561 schools, with 5.41 million eligible students, participated in the Sainsbury's School Games while £51.0 million of public funding was used to stage the event.
It means that since last year, 4,239 more schools, with 1.68 million more eligible students, are taking part in the Sainsbury's School Games.
Youth Sport Trust Managing Director Ali Oliver said:
"It is very pleasing to see that the Sainsbury's School Games is continuing to deliver a real return on investment for the public.
"We are also very happy that the statistics prove the event is going from strength to strength.
"Since last year, 4,239 more schools, with 1.68 million more eligible students, have got involved with the competition.
"What we want now is for the Sainsbury's School Games to continue to grow because the event is a unique opportunity to motivate and inspire millions of young people across the country to take part in more competitive school sport.
"Sport is so vital for the development of young people because it builds character, improves health, boosts confidence and encourages teamwork.
"All of these are valuable life skills and highlight exactly why the Sainsbury's School Games are so importance."
Minister for Sport, Helen Grant said:
"The Sainsbury's School Games is going from strength to strength and it is fantastic news that over four thousand more schools have signed up to the programme in the last year.
"Sport can have such a positive impact on young people's lives - improving health, boosting confidence and encouraging team work and the Sainsbury's School Games is at the heart of the Government's approach to getting young people participating in sport."
The Sainsbury's School Games is delivered by a national partnership made up of the Youth Sport Trust, Sport England, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (who are supported by the Department for Education and the Department of Health), Change4Life and the British Paralympic Association.
The Youth Sport Trust, the landscape lead organisation for school sport, has been commissioned by Sport England to provide development support to schools, sports and other local partners across all levels of the Sainsbury's School Games.