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By Laura Taylor, May 28 2020 09:39AM


Children’s charity the Youth Sport Trust and Sky Sports have teamed up on a campaign to unite young people and communities through sport and promote wellbeing this summer.

With millions of young people set to miss out on a school sport day, the Youth Sport Trust’s annual National School Sport Week campaign will this year be opened up to parents and families and reinvented as National School Sport Week at Home.

Taking place from 20 to 26 June, the UK-wide campaign will give families, communities, schools and sports clubs the opportunity to engage in a series of virtual sporting challenges which help young people capture the enjoyment, competition and camaraderie they have been missing out on during weeks of school closures and social distancing.

People can register to take part in the campaign. Anyone signing up will receive videos and activity cards to help them plan a series of challenges across the week for their families, neighbours, friends or colleagues.

In previous years National School Sport Week has seen thousands of schools join in a week-long celebration of school sport and Physical Education, and their important role enhancing young people’s wellbeing.

Sky Sports will supercharge this year’s campaign, helping to inspire families across the country to take part.

National governing bodies of sport will also be supporting the week, with several appointing stars of their sport as school sport champions.

Youth Sport Trust chief executive Ali Oliver said: “The Youth Sport Trust and Sky Sports share a passionate belief in the power of sport to change lives and unite us, even through the most difficult times.

“Right now, young people are missing their friends and missing the sense of connection they get through sport. Sport has such a crucial role to play in promoting young people’s wellbeing and this has never been more apparent than it is now. After weeks of isolation we hope that YST National School Sport Week at Home 2020 can help bring families, communities, schools and sports clubs back together.”

By Laura Taylor, May 27 2020 08:14AM


Lincoln Minster School have achieved a world record for playing the highest game of field hockey.


The game took place at 5,019m above sea level in Nepal and is now officially recorded as a Guinness World Record.


Set against the beautiful backdrop of the Annapurna Mountain Range, a team from Hockey for Heroes and pupils from Lincoln Minster School battled against reduced oxygen levels and extreme tiredness to play a 60-minute game of hockey.


PE and games teacher Tom Eves said: “This was an emotional and physically exhausting adventure that changed the lives of our pupils, Hockey for Heroes members and hundreds of Nepalese people.


“Friendships formed through adversity to create a group with its heart set on leaving a legacy of hockey in Nepal and setting a world record. This is a remarkable achievement that will be difficult to replicate.”


By Laura Taylor, May 22 2020 03:22PM


Schools all over the country have been fully embracing the return of the 2020/21 School Sport Magazine National Schools U12, U13 and U15 Netball Cups.


It’s a similar picture for the inaugural 2020/21 School Sport Magazine National Schools U14 Rugby Union Cup which has been welcomed by rugby coaches.


But schools who wish to take part will have to act fast as entries close on May 31, following which the draws will be made.


The U14 rugby cup will kick off in September and complement the fantastic competitions run at U15 and U18 level by the RFU and the English Schools Rugby Association.


Likewise the netball competitions are open to all schools in England and Wales and will complement the excellent U14, U16 and U19 cups run by England Netball.


And such has been the response to the news of all four events that entries have already reached the levels needed to meet the criteria for qualifying competitions for the exclusive top 100 sports schools of the year list.


Everyone is hopeful that school sport will be getting back to some form of normality by September – but if competitions need to be cancelled then schools will either have their entry fees credited for the following season or refunded,


Don’t miss out - enter now by emailing [email protected]


By Laura Taylor, May 21 2020 01:41PM


Schools’ rugby league has become the latest victim of the coronavirus.


Following the postponement of the 2020 Challenge Cup Final at Wembley Stadium on July 18, the RFL today confirmed the cancellation of the Warners Champion Schools competitions.


The majority of the ten competitions which are thought to make the Champion Schools the biggest knockout competition in world rugby league – boys and girls from years 7 to year 11 inclusive – had reached the regional finals stage when rugby league activity was suspended as a result of the national lockdown in March.


Two sets of regional finals had been played – for boys in the north east and London and the south east – but the Yorkshire, North West and Cumbria finals were all postponed.


Given the ongoing uncertainty over when senior schools will reopen, as well as the further uncertainty over the resumption of any form of junior rugby league, the RFL reluctantly concluded that while playing the outstanding regional finals may be possible, it will not be practical to stage the national finals days which are usually held in the summer term.


That also means a break in one of the game’s more enduring and popular traditions, as the year 7 U12 boys’ final will not be played at Wembley – where the Steven Mullaney Memorial Match has become established as the curtain-raiser to the Challenge Cup Final since it was renamed in memory of the youngster who scored a superb individual try for Wakefield Schools against their St Helens counterparts in 1986.


Ralph Rimmer, chief executive of the RFL, said: “While we realise there will be many higher-profile sporting fixtures and competitions that are affected by the current situation, this is an especially sad cancellation for us to announce.


“The Warners Champion Schools competitions give so much enjoyment to so many youngsters, as a result of a huge amount of work and organisation that is put in by teachers, parents and our RFL staff – with generous financial support from Gary Warner over the last two years.


“The national finals days have become established at Victoria Park in Warrington over the last couple of summers and the Steven Mullaney Memorial Match is a special part of Challenge Cup Final day at Wembley.


“Unfortunately, the unique circumstances of 2020 mean it won’t be possible for the competitions to be completed. We will do all we can to play more of the regional finals, and hopefully the majority of the boys and girls who have been involved in this year’s matches will join us in looking forward to making the tournament even bigger and better in 2021.”


Regional winners so far included Surrey’s Howard of Effingham School at U13, U14 and U16 level and Richmond’s Grey Court School at U12 and U15 level in the south east and Whitburn CofE Academy (U15 & U16), Whitley Bay High School (U14), Seaton Sluice Middle School (U13) and Hexham Middle School (U12) in the north East.


The RFL will this week unveil the latest initiative to keep youngsters active and involved in rugby league while normal fixtures are suspended, by launching Virtual Clubs.


This follows the popular #SkillToPlay and #FitToPlay campaigns launched early in the lockdown and there are many more resources available for coaches, parents and teachers on the RFL’s digital learning platform Our Learning Zone.

By Laura Taylor, Apr 21 2020 08:52AM


We are happy to announce that issue 79 of School Sport Magazine is landing with schools and other subscribers this week.


However in light of current, unprecedented circumstances, the June/July edition will not be published with normal services resuming with our September/October edition.


We send our wonderful school sport family our very best wishes in the meantime. Stay safe.

By Laura Taylor, Apr 8 2020 10:17AM



Eastbourne College’s Tawande Muyeye has been named the 13th Wisden Schools Cricketer of the Year.


The talented all-rounder accumulated more than 1,100 runs, including a double hundred, and produced some superb performances with his off-spin bowling.


Previous winners of the prestigious award include England stars Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow, James Taylor and Tom Abell.


A full and comprehensive round-up of the 2019 schools’ season by the evergreen Douglas Henderson can be viewed, as always, in the new edition of Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack 2020 out today.

By Laura Taylor, Apr 6 2020 01:33PM


It should be the build-up to a spectacular finale to the schools’ football season – now only time will tell.


Whether organisers allow – or are allowed – extra time to complete the ESFA 2019/20 season remains to be seen in the fast-moving coronavirus pandemic.


But that hasn’t stopped the English Schools’ FA competitions drawing to a series of exciting conclusions over the last couple of months.


(Full full reports and pictures, check out the next edition of School Sport Magazine out on April 20)




By Laura Taylor, Apr 3 2020 09:44AM


And now for some news - sports teachers and pupils from all over the country are fully embracing the return of the 2020/21 School Sport Magazine National Schools U12, U13 and U15 Netball Cups.


It’s a similar picture for the inaugural 2020/21 School Sport Magazine National Schools U14 Rugby Union Cup which has been welcomed by rugby coaches.


And such has been the response to the news of all four events that entries have already reached the levels needed to meet the criteria for qualifying competitions for the exclusive top 100 sports schools of the year list.


Like the new rugby cup, the netball competitions will kick off in September and are open to all schools in England and Wales and will complement the excellent U14, U16 and U19 cups run by England Netball.


Netball sides from the north taking part include Ashville College, Bourne Grammar, Branston Community Academy, Crossley Heath School, Dame Allan’s Girls School, Fallibroome Academy, the Grammar School at Leeds, Goole Academy, Macmillan Academy, Red House School, Settle College, St John Fisher Catholic High School Harrogate, Teesside High School, Whitby High School, Wirral Grammar School for Girls and Woodhouse Grove.


Those in the Midlands consist of the likes of Bedford Girls, Berkhamsted, Brentwood School, Impington Village College, Norwich School, Oswestry School, Southend High School for Girls, Welland Park Academy and Woodbridge School.


South east and south west teams already include Bennett Memorial School, Croydon High School, Farmor’s School, Farnborough Hill School, Forest School, Gordon’s School, Guildford High School, Heathfield School, Howard of Effingham School, King’s College Taunton, Lingfield College, Notting Hill & Ealing School, Putney High School, Queen Anne’s School, Royal Russell School, Sevenoaks Schools, St Catherine’s School, St Helen & St Katharine’s School, Worth School and Wycombe High School.


The U14 rugby cup will complement the fantastic competitions run at U15 and U18 level by the RFU and the English Schools Rugby Association.


So far the spread of entries encompasses all parts of the country with several counties leading way including Surrey (eleven), Kent (seven), Yorkshire (six) and London (five).


But all regions will be represented from Plymouth College, Torquay Grammar, Mount Kelly and Truro School in the south west, King’s Macclesfield, Cheadle Hulme and Lymm High in the north west and Framlingham, Farlingaye, Woodbridge, Gresham’s, Norwich and Wymondham in East Anglia.


Places in all four competitions are still open and schools can enter by emailing [email protected]



By Laura Taylor, Apr 2 2020 12:45PM


Schools’ basketball is the latest sport to be blocked by Covid-19.


Split into two finals days, the March events were suspended - now the May competitions have been abandoned.


A Basketball England spokesman confirmed: “The majority of our school’s competitions have now been cancelled for the remainder of the 2019/20 season due to the number of games that are still outstanding.

“The only exceptions are the U14 Boys Premier, U16 Boys Premier, U17 Girls & Boys, U19 Girls & Boys Conference competitions.


“These were just one game from completion and should have held their finals on Wednesday 18 March. If there is an opportunity to finish them safely, responsibly and fairly before the end of the academic year then we'll explore that option.”




By Laura Taylor, Mar 31 2020 04:56PM


Schools hockey has been shown the red card by the coronavirus.


England Hockey has decided to suspend all grassroots activities until further notice including many schools’ finals


The governing body originally postponed the blue riband U18 schools’ boys’ and girls’ finals at Lee Valley Hockey Centre on March 19 and the U14 and U16 boys’ finals.


Now they have decided that the main U16 and U14 tier 1 boys’ final stages will be cancelled altogether alongwith the lower tier 2, 3 and 4 U18 boys championships, the U16 tier 2 and 3 finals, the U14 tier 2 event and the boys and girls U13, U12, U11 In2Hockey Championships.


But it is hoped the U18 boys’ and girls’ finals may be staged later in the year when hockey activity resumes.


The girls’ U14 and U16 schools’ championship finals managed to escape the virus – for a full round-up with pictures, check out the next edition of School Sport Magazine out on April 20.