Cornwall Lead the way Nationally in Competitive School Sport

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This winter has seen over 4000 young people take part and compete in their very first Cornwall School Games area qualifiers across 8 categories in 4 different sports. 500 young people in 44 teams from 19 schools in Cornwall qualified for and competed in the prestigious finals held on Tuesday 12th February at Truro School.

This was the first ever School Games event nationally which incorporated the NEW vision and format for young people who wouldn't usually get the chance to compete. 

Following on from the first ever 'Walking Sports Games' for children in Primary Schools held in December at Callywith College and delivered by Emma Moore from Mid Cornwall Sports Network, Tuesday's event focused on different variations of competition to attract a new audience to competitive school sport.

PE teachers in Cornwall realised that many young people were missing out on the opportunity to develop skills from working and communicating in a team, problem solving and resilience, learning to self and peer reflect, improve relationships, gain leadership skills, improve self-esteem and body confidence.

Cornwall Sports Partnership, School Games Organisers, PE staff and young people banded together to design a new vision and innovative sports formats for the Cornwall School Games which aims to provide a well organised, appropriate and enjoyable programme of competitions and festivals for students of all abilities at a local and county level.

Rachel Knott from Cornwall Sports Partnership said: "This is an exciting time for Cornwall school sport. After winning a national award for our work last year and being selected  as a national pilot this year, Cornwall really is leading the way by working  together to maximise meaningful opportunities for all young people."

Sports delivered included Netball, Rugby, Handball and Wheelchair Basketball but all delivered with different alternative formats and/or scoring aimed to enthuse and inspire the new target audience.  Examples include:

Netball Versatility

  • The format and scoring design was specifically designed to focus on player development - encouraging players outside of their comfort zone, improving weaknesses, team support and communication by rotating positions after each half.
  • Participants were asked to vote for a competing team that demonstrated one or more of the school games values the most. The aim was to encourage discussion between teams highlighting the importance of these values - not just the winning! (passion, determination, honesty, respect, team work, self-belief). 
  • The team with votes gained extra match points towards overall positions and results tables.

Rugby 10s

  • The format and scoring design was specifically designed to focus on player development. Bonus points were awarded each game for the 'moment of magic' voted by teams.
  • The game was played in quarters where players rotate every quarter and the game was scored with one point available each quarter and reset after each quarter.

Handball

  • Winners of these county finals go on to compete in the regional finals and then national finals. Teams win by the traditional rules and format.
  • Participants are asked to vote for a competing team that has demonstrated one or more of the school games values the most. The aim is to encourage discussion between teams highlighting the importance of these values - not just the winning! (passion, determination, honesty, respect, team work, self-belief).

Wheelchair Basketball

  • Inclusive activity to engage students with physical, sensory and learning disabilities that encourages player rotation and development.

Netball competitor at Saltash.net said:  "I don't normally take part in competition for my school because I suffer from anxiety. Focusing on the School Games values in this competition has made us and other teams think about how we speak to each other and act. The teams here are very friendly and supportive - it makes me feel less anxious about meeting new people"

Dan Lugg, School Games Organiser for Peninsula Sports Network who has been involved in creating and delivery these new formats said: "The Netball and Rugby Cornwall School Games Qualifiers were the most rewarding events I've ever run. It was so good to see the young people who haven't had the opportunity to play before - all of the schools commented on how beneficial it has been to give them this chance that they wouldn't usually be able to."

Christy Benney, Head of PE at Falmouth School said: "The new Netball and Rugby formats have been absolutely fantastic for our students. They came back thrilled and really enjoyed the competition when previously they have felt that they were not good enough to be selected for anything! It was lovely that after attending training week in week out that they finally had an event to attend to put their skills into practice and develop from this new experience. It was so rewarding for our students and it has done wonders for their confidence!

There are so many important life skills to be gained from sports competition and it's so refreshing that the Cornwall School Games is allowing and encouraging more young people to benefit from these!"

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The results
Netball Year 7

  1. Truro School
  2. Budehaven Community School
  3. Saltash
  4. Treviglas
  5. Richard Lander School & Newquay Tretherras
  6. Saltash.net
  7. St. Ives School

Netball Year 8

  1. Falmouth School
  2. Mounts Bay Academy
  3. Penryn College & Treviglas
  4. Budehaven Community School
  5. Newquay Tretherras 
  6. Mounts Bay Academy
  7. St Ives School

Rugby 10s Year 8

  1. Newquay Tretherras
  2. Mounts Bay Academy & Richard Lander School
  3. Liskeard School *SG Values Points*
  4. Penryn College
  5. Bodmin College *SG Values Points*

Handball Years 7 & 8 Boys

  1. Mounts Bay Academy 
  2. Penryn College
  3. Liskeard School
  4. The Roseland *SG Values Points*

Handball Years 7 & 8 Girls

  1. Mounts Bay Academy
  2. Penryn College
  3. Liskeard School
  4. The Roseland *SG Values Points*

Handball Years 9 & 10 Boys

  1. Pool Academy
  2. Humphry Davy School
  3. Liskeard School *SG Values Points*
  4. Bodmin College

Handball Years 9 & 10 Girls

  1. Penryn College
  2. Mounts Bay Academy 
  3. Budehaven Community School *SG Values Points*
  4. Bodmin College
Visit the Cornwall School Games page here!