As part of International Day of Education, we want to celebrate the cricket delivery the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation does in schools throughout Gloucestershire and the City of Bristol.
Six out of seven
Everyone knows the importance of an education. It provides stability, opportunity, knowledge, and offers children and young people a chance for self-discovery and to learn about their interests. All subjects that are taught in school impacts a child’s development, and Physical Education, or PE, is no exception. PE in schools not only supports both physical and mental health, but it also offers transferable skills, such as resilience, confidence, and improved concentration, for core subjects like maths and literacy in the classroom.
As part of the curriculum, schools must teach pupils to learn, develop, and apply the seven fundamental movement skills of running, co-ordination, catching, striking, jumping, throwing, and kicking. Delivering cricket in schools as part of the curriculum teaches six of the skills.
The Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation schools programme has been delivering cricket in a number of schools throughout Gloucestershire and the City of Bristol for many years, with the support of our charity partners Chance to Shine and the Lord’s Taverners. In the last academic year from September 2021 to August 2022, our Community Coaches and Development Officers have enthusiastically delivered over 3,600 hours in almost 200 schools, which includes primary, secondary and Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) schools, reaching over 17,800 children and young people.
Louise, a teacher at Chester Park Juniors said:
“I just want to send a HUGE thank you for all your help and support during our Sports Week. The energy and enthusiasm of the coaches kept the children engaged, even during this heat. Every child was able to access a variety of sports throughout the week and the feedback was amazing from both adults and children.”
Stuart Priscott, Operations Manager, Chance to Shine said:
“All of us at Chance to Shine believe that children should have the opportunity to play and learn through sport, and cricket in particular. Over many years the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation have had great impact supporting schools through great coaching and extensive competition to make cricket accessible to all.”
Our SEND school’s programme is supported by our charity partner the Lord’s Taverners, who empower young people through cricket.
Liz Kuda, Disability Cricket Programme Manager at the Lord’s Taverners said:
“Our partnership with the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation has seen great success of our work within SEND settings through our new SEND schools programme. We have enhanced our offer to deliver both Table Cricket and/or soft-ball cricket in SEND schools, providing the most appropriate offer for each participant, and we look forward to seeing the positive impact the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation will again deliver.”
More than class delivery
Our Community Coaches and Development Officers deliver weekly sessions over a term for a day or half a day and help children to take the next steps to progress on their cricketing journey, which could be as simple as the school taking part in one of the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation’s school competitions. Last academic year 1,550 pupils from 177 schools took part in our primary or secondary schools’ soft-ball competitions. Young people in SEND schools also have the opportunity to compete through the Lord’s Taverners national Table Cricket tournament, which last year saw two teams from Gloucestershire in the final, played at the home of cricket, Lord’s Cricket Ground.
Young people who take part in Table Cricket SEND delivery at Paternoster School said:
“I like doing Table Cricket because I like keeping score and holding the ball.”
“Table Cricket is amazing. I really like hitting a six.”
“I like table cricket because I like hitting the ball with the bat.”
The Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation also supports schools and teaching staff to build their confidence in cricket delivery by providing engaging Continuous Professional Development (CPD) for teachers. Last academic year saw 16 schools take part in this offer, which is keeping cricket alive in schools and sustaining the delivery of cricket as part of the curriculum.
Working in partnership with the Gloucestershire County Cricket Club, we invite schools to spend a day the at the Seat Unique Stadium and the Cheltenham Cricket Festival. This involves schools bringing classes to professional matches where they access coaching, a chance to meet the players and ask questions, have a tour of the Gloucestershire Cricket Museum, as well as fun activities such the reaction wall and on field interval group activity on the hallowed turf.
Out of school offers
Once a child or young person has caught the cricket bug from our school delivery, our Community Coaches and Development Officers can signpost pupils and inform teaching staff of further playing opportunities in their community, from joining one of our free community hubs such as Street, Wicketz, ACE, or Super 1s, accessing the national programmes All Stars and Dynamos, or going to their nearest cricket club.
Chris Munden, Cricket Operations Manager at the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation said:
“At the Gloucestershire Cricket Foundation, we want to take cricket to more people, inspiring every generation and community to get involved in the game and fulfil their potential. Our schools programme not only supports our priority of spurring children into cricket at a young age, but it also supports schools and teachers to achieve their academic outcomes and excite young people into new and further activity outside of school.”
We are proud of the impact our school delivery is having on academic institutions, teaching staff, and pupils across the county of Gloucestershire and the City of Bristol and we look forward to bringing out the best of people through the power of cricket in 2023.