Inclusion Lead School Newsletter

January 2024


Inclusion Live Week - 29 January – 02 February 2024

Teachers, school leaders, young SEND people and their parents continue to tell us that there is a real need to learn from others who have successfully developed strategies and programmes that positively engage everyone in physical activity. We also know that 389,171 pupils have and Education Health Care Plan (EHCP) and 1,183,384 require SEND support in England. Sadly, disabled children are also twice as likely to be lonely than their non-disabled peers and more likely to feel they have no one to talk and to feel left out and alone.

Inclusion 2024 Live week is a fantastic opportunity to listen to those who have had real success. Learn something new and feel more confident in developing the knowledge to support young people with SEND to access high quality PE, school sport and physical activity. One third of disabled children take part in less than 30 minutes of sport and physical activity per day and disabled children’s activity levels decrease significantly as they get older.

We are also hearing from National Governing Bodies of Sport and community sports clubs how children with SEND are not returning to sport after the pandemic. We have examples of families having to withdraw their children due to the cost of travel or specialist equipment that is needed. This is why it is so important that we offer as many touchpoints with sport, physical activity and play as possible through school settings.

Our programme of innovative and interactive sessions during Inclusion Live Week are designed to spark ideas and enable everyone who works with SEND children to connect and think differently.

To enable as many professionals as possible to access the week, we ask our amazing Lead Inclusion school network to promote it to your contacts and wider networks. You can find the overview of the week with booking links and a handy toolkit with suggested emails and social media posts.

Thank you for your ongoing support as we strive to create more opportunities for young people who need them the most.

Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) Lead Inclusion School Project

In 2022/23, the LTA worked in partnership with YST to deliver a pilot project aimed at getting as many SEND young people as possible experiencing and enjoying the game. The project links into a sector leading programme called open court and the education programme called LTA Youth. Both are linked into community provision.

Ten lead schools took part reaching 584 young people, of whom 404 had additional needs. 98 young people were trained as leaders of whom 44 had additional needs.

The project was an overwhelming success with young people and teachers commenting they had improved confidence, happiness, resilience and enjoyment from being part of the project.

In 2023/24, the LTA and YST are again working together to reach even more young people and volunteers. We are inviting phase one schools to reapply and are looking for five to ten alongside the search for ten new lead inclusion schools. There are CPD, equipment vouchers, and a grant available for successful lead schools.

If your school is interested in the LTA project, please email [email protected] and we will be able to follow up closer to the time of application.

The closing date for applications is Friday 09 February 2024.

Partner Survey

You should have recently received an email from Amy Skipp at Ask Research regarding circulating the partner survey to everyone you have worked with over the last three years of the project.

As Inclusion 2024 is drawing to a close, it is important we capture and highlight the effect and impact of the fantastic work that the Lead Inclusion School network undertake.

Please pass the link on to everyone you have had contact with as part of the project over the last three years. This could be through giving training or advice, running events, attending meetings, or sharing information. We want to hear from as many people as possible.

Here is some suggested text and a QR code to send onto practitioners you are working with:

Dear XX,

We'd really like to know what you thought about YST's Inclusion 2024 project and how it helped you support children with SEND in PE and school sports locally. Please could you take a few minutes to feed back to us:



Rebecca is now on an exciting sabbatical for two months doing some international volunteering and travelling. In her absence, other colleagues from Youth Sport Trust will be on hand to support you, including Caroline and Brad ([email protected] and [email protected]).

With all the recent changes, please be aware that there may be delays in responding to queries. Thank you for your understanding.

Lead Inclusion School Involvement School Games County Meetings

As mentioned in the December newsletter, we would like Lead Inclusion schools to facilitate some conversations with their local School Games network at the county meetings coming up in the spring term. Following some discussions internally and with Inclusion Development Coaches, there has been a slight change of approach.

The ask for Lead Inclusion schools is to facilitate a conversation at these meetings on one of the following areas:

  1. Wider inclusion of young people in the School Games (addressing the inclusion of other protected characteristic in addition to SEND)
  2. MATP – how to embed this format to engage and provide opportunities for young people with PMLD
  3. Gender Diversity – facilitate discussions and advise on inclusive practice within the School Games with a lens around gender diversity
  4. Lead Inclusion School role – lead a general discussion around the role you as a Lead Inclusion School can play in creating a more inclusive School Games.

This conversation will be approximately 20 minutes and will follow an Inclusion by Design session the County Lead DC will be delivering. County Lead DC’s have been briefed and should have invited you to these meetings and included you in any communication around the agenda.

As a call for action for Lead Inclusion schools, please contact your County Lead DC for a discussion on how you can input into the Inclusion by Design session and how the facilitated conversation will align to this.

Please note that SGOs who attended the regional conferences would already have heard some of the Inclusion by Design presentation previously.


Including Young People with a Vision Impairment in PE

This virtual workshop, which will take place on Monday 22 January from 3:45-4:45pm on Gmeet, has been organised by Lesley Byrne (YST Lead Inclusion School, Milton Keynes). Guest speakers will include Lucy Middleton and Anna Vecchio (St Pauls Catholic School, Milton Keynes).

Adaptive methods to include children with a Vision Impairment in mainstream PE lessons. The training will cover:

  • The four main eye conditions
  • The basics
  • Teaching strategies
  • STEP Principles (adapting Space, Task, Equipment, Peers)
  • Sport specific adaptions (Badminton/Tennis, Football, Rounders, Netball/Basketball, Running, Goalball).

Register now or email Lesley Byrne for more information. 

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