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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

All Stars Hall of Fame

all star St John’s Ambulance all star Disability Sport Wales page 3 page 2

all star 5x60 page 6

all star Mainstreaming the Welsh Language page 8

Introducing… The Sports Council for Wales is the national organisation responsible for developing and promoting sport and physical activity in Wales.

all star Dragon Sport page 10

all star Kelly Patterson page 18

all star Clwb Beicio Mynydd all star Rhys Davies page 14 Dyffryn Conwy page 12

all star Michael Sobell Leisure Centre page 20

all star Welsh Language UKCC Award page 22

all star Tredegar Junior Netball Club page 16

all star Dave Haller page 24

The Council is one of the main contributors to ‘Climbing Higher’, the Welsh Assembly Government’s long-term strategy for sport and physical activity. The aim of the strategy is to ensure that within 20 years, sport and physical activity will be at the heart of Welsh life and at the heart of Government policy. Wales has some major challenges ahead. With only 49% of the population participating in a recognised sport, significant investment is required in community activities, particularly those that target our young people. The Council’s schemes will contribute to an increase in participation levels, however it cannot achieve this alone. It is the responsibility of all individuals to make lifestyle choices that improve their wellbeing, and through greater intervention, advocacy and social marketing at a local level, individuals will recognise the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle and be motivated to change. There are two major strands to the Council’s work and increasing physical activity is just one of them. Achieving excellence in Welsh sport is the other and the Council has put systems in place to develop the next generation of élite competitors. Identifying talent, ensuring it is developed by gifted coaches, providing appropriate competition and offering excellent services are all key strands to the Council’s work.

all star Elizabeth and Sonia all star Glyn Walters page 28 Evans page 26

all star Thomas, Carroll page 30

all star PESS Initiative page 32

Promoting good practice is an essential part of the Council’s advocacy agenda. This document outlines some of the key recent successes, demonstrating the contribution the Council is making to the future development of sport and physical activity in Wales.

To find out how you could benefit from the work of the Sports Council for Wales, visit www.sportscouncil-wales.org.uk or call 0845 0450904.

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Spectacular Focus on Wheelchair Sports

The UK’s leading first aid charity has more than the wellbeing of the public in its sights. With the help of the Sports Council for Wales, it can now add bicycles to its fleet of ambulances – improving the health of its volunteers while delivering fast emergency care.

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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

St. John’s Ambulance Swap Four Wheels For Two

all star profile organisation St John’s Ambulance project two-wheeled ambulances

all star profile event Wheelchair Sports Spectacular organiser Joanna Coates, Disability Sport Wales Development Officer she says “wheelchair sport is not just for wheelchair users”

The St John’s service in Powys needed additional financial support for their Cycle Responder Project. The charity succeeded with a £750 Community Chest grant from the Sports Council for Wales. The funding helped purchase a host of mountain bikes and panniers for use in events across Mid Wales – ranging from fun runs and marathons to community events and street parades.

The South Wales Ariam Media Wheelchair Sports Spectacular again inspired children, young people and adults across the region with a spectacular ‘hands on’ insight into wheelchair sports.

As well as providing an invaluable service to its public, charity staff can improve their cycling skills and raise their health and wellbeing by pedalling their way to fitness.

The Disability Sport Wales event, in partnership with the City and County of Cardiff, attracted over 250 participants to the National Indoor Athletics Centre to try out wheelchair sports.

St John’s Ambulance hope that the advancement in their service will attract the attention of new recruits – eager to get on their bikes and help take the charity into the future.

The event aims to get more people more active in wheelchair sports, offering a range of activities run by local sports clubs and coaches, from rugby to table tennis, basketball and more.

Joanna Coates, Disability Sport Wales Development Officer, ensured the centre was transformed into a hive of activity. She said: “This is the third year that the Spectacular has taken place in Wales and I was thrilled to host the event in Cardiff again. “We are keen to get across the message that wheelchair sport is not just for wheelchair users. “Some disability sports clubs in the area even have non-disabled members who are fully included in the club activities.” With this year’s emphasis on turning more participants into club members, the event was supported by many of Wales’ top élite athletes who helped draw participants to the event and instil them with the hunger to have a go.

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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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Abertillery Leisure Centre in Blaenau Gwent set the scene for a lively launch of the pioneering 5x60 programme where Abertillery Comprehensive School pupils – together with the visiting glitterati – experienced a new dimension in the way physical activity is set to be delivered in Wales’ secondary schools. Welsh Big Brother 7 stars Glyn Wise and Imogen Thomas joined a cast of hundreds to launch the innovative new programme aimed at getting young people in Wales more active. The 5x60 scheme is set to change the face of the provision of sport and physical activity in schools by encouraging pupils to decide upon the type of activities in which they want to participate. The aim is to encourage those who do not take part in sport to dust off their trainers and get active.

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And the opportunities to get involved are plenty as the Big Brother stars discovered at the launch.

all star profile event 5x60 launch location Abertillery Leisure Centre starring Glyn Wise, Imogen Thomas and 100s of secondary school pupils activities various

The show’s runner-up Glyn was a keen competitor in the weekly tasks set by Big Brother during his 13-week stint, having danced non-stop for over 10 hours in the Blindfolded Danceathon task and walked 15,337 steps to be handed the crown in the 500-mile pedometer challenge. And the 18-year-old from Blaenau Ffestiniog wasted little time in getting in on the action in Abertillery. The former head boy at Ysgol y Moelwyn and part-time lifeguard took to the trampoline and football pitch as he immersed himself in the variety of activities on display. Imogen, 23 from Llanelli, became the self-confessed aerobics queen of the Big Brother house last summer as she guided her housemates through a gruelling, high-tempo daily exercise class. She took centre stage again as she united with the students to indulge in an aerobics and boxercise session.

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Big Brother Stars Go Back to School

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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Mainstreaming the Welsh Language through Sport National Governing Bodies (NGBs) of Sport have recently benefited from a pioneering Welsh language course aimed at ‘mainstreaming’ the language into their everyday activities. Organised by the Welsh Sports Association and supported by the Sports Council for Wales, the course was the first of its kind to be offered to NGB staff and associated partners. Stepping back into the classroom to take advantage of the opportunity were representatives from golf, sailing, canoeing, the Federation of Disability Sport Wales, gymnastics,

netball, football and rugby, alongside senior staff from the Sports Council for Wales. In partnership with Cardiff University and the Urdd, lessons were delivered through a combination of introductory sessions and intense practical work, tailored to the everyday requirements of sports development in Wales. The course which ran at Llangrannog in November 2006, forms part of a wider strategy aimed at developing the Welsh language through sport.

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all star profile name National Governing Bodies of Sport location Llangrannog strategy developing the Welsh language through sport


Dragon Lures South Wales Schools to Sporting Bash In March, over 800 children from schools in South East Wales descended on the National Indoor Athletics Centre in Cardiff at the inaugural ‘Dragon Sport Extravaganza’. Hoping to entice the apprentice athletes away from simply watching our élite sportsmen and women on television and instead emulating their achievements, the Extravaganza aimed to kick start a healthy sporting interest and unearth some future medal potential along the way.

Young people were offered the chance to indulge in an all-day session of ten sporting activities, ranging from tri-golf to hockey to cricket. At its launch in October 2000, the Sports Council for Wales brainchild was billed as the biggest ever recruitment drive in Welsh sport – and seven years on from its inception, it has continued to exceed all expectations.

actively involved in the Scheme and last year alone, over 100,000 participants were recruited and over 1,500 adults – other than teachers – are now helping to run after-school Dragon Sport clubs.

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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all star profile event Dragon Sport Extravaganza location National Indoor Athletics Centre, Cardiff participants 800 primary school children aims to kick start a healthy sporting interest amongst Wales’ children

And with ten authorities across the South East region each submitting four schools to participate in the Extravaganza, children from 40 Welsh schools helped to celebrate Dragon Sport’s seventh birthday in style.

Latest figures show that 92% of primary schools in Wales are now

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Dyffryn Conwy is a newly formed mountain biking club that has been one of the major success stories of the North West Wales Outdoor Partnership. Despite only being formed in October 2006, the Club boasts a membership of over 40 juniors, 40 adults, 6 coaches and 6 first aiders. In November, the Club held a highly successful launch event to publicise their presence in the Llanrwst area, attracting 105 riders who took part in a mountain bike orienteering event.

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Both the organisers and Welsh Cycling were particularly impressed to see that such a large number of riders – and indeed spectators – were families and young people. The Club is already planning to take advantage of local interest in mountain biking through a partnership with Welsh Cycling on the ‘Go Ride’ school/club link programme.

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Clwb Beicio Mynydd Dyffryn Conwy

The Club is committed to ensuring mountain biking has a high profile in the area, particularly as the first language of the Club is Welsh which encourages local people to use the resources available.

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all star profile name Clwb Beicio Mynydd Dyffryn Conwy age 9-99 event mountain bike orienteering first language welsh aims to maintain a high profile for mountain biking within the local area


Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Rhys Davies

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15 Across the Atlantic, Welsh golf’s rising star, Rhys Davies, entered headlong into the home straight of his Business degree at East Tennessee State University (ETSU) with the prospect of a successful professional career looming large on the horizon. The Élite Cymru star’s outstanding performances across the pond saw him extend his own ETSU record of individual titles to 10 over his 50tournament collegiate career for the Buccaneers and, after finishing the last two seasons ranked in the top five individually, he made the quantum leap to number one – the first UK player to do so since Irishman Graeme McDowell

achieved the feat in 2002 while at Alabama State. He was even considered by the local media as “the best player to ever play” at the college. Back in the Welsh fold, Davies also helped steer the Welsh team of him, Nigel Edwards and Llewelyn Matthews to fourth place in the World Amateur Team Championships in Stellenbosch, South Africa in November 2006. Their top 5 finish with a 17 under par score cemented their stature as the leading home nation, trouncing England and Scotland into a tied sixth position and Ireland tied at 9th.

all star profile name Rhys Davies age 22 likes golf! they say “the best player to ever play [at East Tennessee State University]”


Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Mums and Kids Get Active

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An exciting new initiative is underway in Blaenau Gwent to help get people more active. Tredegar Junior Netball Club has launched ‘Keep Fit Sessions for Mums & Kids’, with the aim of increasing the number of junior and senior players at the Club and also to encourage mums to become more physically active. The initiative is a partnership between Tredegar Leisure Centre, Blaenau Gwent Sports

Development Team and Tredegar Ladies Netball Team, and the Club has also received support from the Sports Council for Wales through its Community Chest scheme. Initially, a pilot project was launched to encourage young players and their parents to join the Club. The sessions introduced very basic ball skills for players as young as three, whilst around 30 mothers also took part in the sessions – particularly during the ‘warm up’ and ‘cool down’.

Over time, some of the mums have gained confidence and joined the senior netball club – either in a coaching or playing capacity, whilst others are using the gym and swimming facilities at the leisure centre. The project is now being expanded with further help from Community Chest, and additional equipment has been purchased to cater for an average of 40 young people.

all star profile name Tredegar Junior Netball Club location Blaenau Gwent activity Keep Fit Sessions for Mums and Kids


Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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Kelly Patterson

all star profile name Kelly Patterson role Child Protection and Equity Officer, Sports Council for Wales focus promoting the ‘Equality Standard for Sport’

19 Equity in sport has always been at the forefront of the Council’s policies and investment decisions. In early 2007, the Council decided to invest further in this area of work with the appointment of Kelly Patterson as its Child Protection and Equity Officer. Kelly brings extensive experience of working within the health, education and social care sector, and her work will focus on co-ordinating and monitoring ethics and equity policies within Governing Bodies – in particular promoting the ‘Equality Standard for Sport’.

Education and training will also be a focus for her work, as well as the development of an action plan that will aid the development and use of ethical practices and behaviours within Governing Bodies and other key sporting partners. In addition to the innovative work taking place in Wales, a ‘Home Country Sports Councils Equity Group’ has been established, with the aim of developing a co-ordinated approach to equity development across the UK.


In 2006, a running club was established at Michael Sobell Leisure Centre in Aberdare to encourage more women to train for, and participate in, the Nos Galan Road Race that takes place each New Year’s Eve in Mountain Ash. Initially, 30 women joined the club and trained once a week. By mid-November the number of club members had risen to 60 and to cope with demand, a second session was introduced. Then in the New Year, after resolutions had been made, the numbers rose again and by mid-March, over 100 women had registered with the Club.

The club is now going from strength to strength with around 60 women participating in two sessions twice a week. After the success of the running sessions, it became clear that members wanted to get involved in new, fun activities. As the social side of sport was equally important to members, it was decided that with summer approaching, the club would arrange rounders sessions. The staff, with assistance from the RCT Sport Development Co-ordinator, successfully applied for a Community Chest grant to

fund an initial 4-week training session and a league. The money was used to cover facility costs and equipment as well as to enable staff to obtain relevant qualifications. The sessions have been a major success, attracting more than 50 women and the league now has 8 teams. Interestingly, many of the club’s activities are attracting women and girls who are not members of a gym and do not currently participate in fitness activities. For many women involved with the club, this is their first step to becoming more active and their first step to a healthier lifestyle.

all star profile name Michael Sobell Leisure Centre Ladies’ Running Club membership around 60 activities running and rounders!

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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On the Right Track in Aberdare

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The way in which coaching, leadership and instruction is delivered across the sporting arena in Wales is set to take a significant step forward with the introduction of the first Welsh Language UK Coaching Certificate (UKCC) Award. The course has been designed to ensure that sports are delivering the best available ‘athlete-centred’ coaching – both in performance and recreational enjoyment of sport – and Bro Ffestiniog Rugby Club was the first to host a course entirely through the medium of Welsh.

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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Welsh Language Reaches Sporting Milestone

A host of coaches descended upon the Gwynedd club for a two-day workshop packed with interactive and practical sessions on how to best deliver a rugby coaching programme, with the aim of securing a Level One standard UKCC.

Ceri Thomas, and Wynn Isaac, the Rugby Development Officer for Gwynedd. Extending the use of Welsh beyond the school gates is vitally important and we must make sure that opportunities are available to allow this to happen. Using Welsh socially through sporting activities will ensure that the language has a chance to grow organically and become a natural part of life. Ceri Thomas says “This will be the first of many courses run through the Welsh language. The Welsh Rugby Union’s TAG award will be available again next season helping to increase opportunities for rugby coaches to train in and – more importantly – provide participation opportunities for people in the language of their choice.”

“Language can make a big difference to the way in which people interact with one another and speaking the Welsh language in sport can be a big advantage both on and off the field. The introduction of this Welsh The award represents the Language UKCC level one course culmination of activity between the will give would-be coaches extra Welsh Sports Association’s Welsh confidence to pass on their skills Language Development Officer through the medium of Welsh.” Sessions included ball handling skills, information on child protection issues and guidelines on how to best communicate a pre-planned coaching session.

23 all star profile name Welsh Language UK Coaching Certificate hosts Bro Ffestiniog Rugby Club they say “This will be the first of many courses run through the Welsh language.”


Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Head Honcho Haller Scoops Coaching Award

24 The man responsible for cultivating the talents of a fleet of world class swimmers has been awarded the top honour at the 2006 Sports Council for Wales ‘Coach of the Year’ awards. In a year which saw his protégées shine on the international swimming circuit, City of Cardiff Swimming Club Head Coach, Dave Haller, was recognised for his work, notably with David Davies – Olympic bronze medallist and 2006 Commonwealth Games gold medallist at 1500m freestyle and bronze medallist at 400m freestyle. And Davies is quick to highlight the contribution his mentor has made to his flourishing career: “My medals are as much Dave’s as they are mine. He is with me at every training session, he’s a great motivator and we are so lucky to have him here in Wales – his experience is second to none, his knowledge is superb and more importantly he’s an understanding coach and a great person.”

And the 21-year-old champion from Barry is in good company as Haller’s HQ has also attracted Davies’ Olympic stablemate and Melbourne multi-medal winning Scotsman Gregor Tait. Those formerly under Haller’s wing include many top swimmers including Mark Foster and Olympic champions David Wilkie and Duncan Goodhew. Needless to say, Haller’s career is dotted with a host of highlights including his appointment as Olympic coach for both the 1976 and 1980 Games. During his tenure, Team GB finished second at the Men’s World Championships and won the BBC Sports Personality’s ‘Team of the Year’ award. His talent took him to Hong Kong for a period of ten years, before his return to take charge of the City of Cardiff Club based at the Welsh Institute of Sport.

all star profile name Dave Haller sport swim coach protégées David Davies; Mark Foster; David Wilkie; Duncan Goodhew career highlights Olympic swim team coach 1976 and 1980; Commonwealth gold for David Davies in 2006

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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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Swim Your Way to a Healthy Life

all star profile names Elizabeth and Sonia Evans age 7 & 62 lives Pontypool loves swimming she says “We enjoy it very much!”

People have been taking to the water in their droves of late to take advantage of the Welsh Assembly Government’s ‘Free Swimming’ initiative. None more so than seven-year-old Elizabeth and her 62-year-old grandmother Sonia Evans from Pontypool. Well and truly bitten by the swimming bug when she was five years old, Elizabeth soon became a firm fixture at her local pool where she attended swimming lessons on a regular basis. Soon enough, she was dragging her grandmother through the leisure centre doors at every available opportunity.

27 And rather than being restricted to watching her granddaughter from the viewing galleries, Sonia has been donning her swimming costume and joining her in the water – much to Elizabeth’s delight. Sonia is already reaping the benefits. “I haven’t swum for quite a few years because I didn’t have anybody to go with but now I take Beth, we can both enjoy it. “Swimming is something you can do whatever the weather so it’s fun to do it with Beth because, of course, you play in the water and meet other grannies there that are doing the same thing. We enjoy it very much!”

Sonia has seen the sessions have a positive effect on her health, including the strengthening of her bones and her stamina. The Assembly’s groundbreaking initiative offers free swimming sessions to young people aged 16 and under and the over 60’s. Both gran and granddaughter have been taking full advantage of the structured and unstructured swimming sessions available in Torfaen, where a variety of additional sessions are on offer including water polo, general splash and inflatable swimming sessions.


Volunteer Coach of the Year – Community Coach Glyn joined Garw Valley Tennis Club in 1973, initially as a valued member of their 1st team. Glyn became Chairman of the Club in 1995, and has since worked tirelessly for the young people of the local community. Glyn spends 15-20 unpaid hours per week working for the tennis club and the local community, and as well as coaching, he provides maintenance to the playing facility and to the club house. Glyn has recently raised £21,000 towards the resurfacing of the courts, enabling the Club to take over the lease on the courts from Bridgend County Borough Council, securing their future. Garw Valley is a junior focused club which runs a comprehensive coaching and competition programme for its youngsters which Glyn co-ordinates as well as providing the coaching. The programme runs three nights a week during the spring, summer and autumn months and caters for 4-18yr olds and has a junior membership of 50.

Glyn works in partnership with the Sports Council for Wales and provides Dragon Sport sessions at the Club as well as regular tennis festivals for local schools. He also provides a huge amount of community focused tennis activity for the local primary school – Glyngarw Infants – and also visits the Pontycymmer adult day care centre once a week to provide tennis activities for adults who are recovering from mental illness. He has recently become involved with Disability Sport Wales festivals for schools, and helps to provide tennis activities for young people with a range of disabilities. Glyn is highly regarded in Pontycymmer by parents and children alike; he is providing the type of community activity through tennis that keeps young people off the streets and gives them an opportunity to play a sport which has physical fitness, health, psychological and social benefits.

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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all star profile name Glyn Walters member Garw Valley Tennis Club role chairman, coach, fundraiser, maintenance, liaison, co-ordinator, tennis player

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Free leisure centre membership for all staff, fruit bowls in offices and Indian head massages have helped the Thomas, Carroll Group win a Sunday Times award as one of the UK’s top employers. As Wales’s largest independent insurance broker, the company has always looked after its workforce. But more recently, managers have recognised the potential to increase staff morale, retention and productivity through a programme of physical wellbeing. Due to the high levels of stress involved in such a fast moving industry, the firm has dedicated time to formalising their free health benefits package, which includes:

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★ Corporate membership at Caerphilly Leisure Centre ★ A personal trainer & mentor to accompany staff to the gym or on a lunchtime jog, as well as supporting individual fitness goals ★ Free fruit bowls in every office, filled up at the start of each week ★ Regular stress management workshops ★ A qualified Indian head massager to give all employees a de-stress massage on site ★ Flexible working hours to allow time for physical activities or sport The wellbeing programme has resulted in a 0% staff turnover and helped the company attract a number of high quality people. Since the initiative was launched, it’s all contributed to a sizeable increase in company profits.

all star profile name Thomas, Carroll Group sector insurance values employee wellbeing awards Sunday Times UK top employer

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Thomas, Carroll Ensures a Fit and Healthy Workforce

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In December 2006, Estyn – Her Majesty’s Inspectorate for Education and Training – released its 2005/6 report on the impact made by the PE and School Sport Initiative (PESS) which is managed by the Sports Council for Wales and funded by the Welsh Assembly Government. The report highlighted that the PESS scheme is continuing to have a significant impact – not only on standards of teaching and performance – but also on pupils’ behaviour, learning skills and attitudes.

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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

Sports Council for Wales All Stars

PE Initiative Continues to Set Benchmarks

Four years since its inception, Wales’s unique physical education programme is maintaining its status as the nation’s leading initiative in raising standards in the delivery of PE lessons in the principality.

The report stated that “Standards of physical education are improving, through more and better quality day-to-day experiences for pupils in schools.” It also stated that teachers have benefited from the scheme’s “clear focus on supporting and developing teachers’ skills in teaching physical education, rather than only on providing one-off experiences from specialist providers.” PESS was launched in 2002 with an initial 18 Development Centres – a cluster of at least four partners, including a minimum three schools and post-16 education providers or leisure centres. There are now 63 Development Centres – 12 newly established this year. In addition, every local authority has appointed a PE and School Sport Co-ordinator.

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all star profile name Estyn Report on the impact of the PE and School Sport Initiative released 2005/06 significant statistics 63 Development Centres 12 new for 2007 the report says “Standards of physical education are improving”


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Sports Council for Wales All Stars

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All Stars 06-07 Sports Council for Wales