School sports budgets boosted by soft drinks levy
Public Health Minister Steve Brine said: “Investing in school facilities such as sports halls, playgrounds, kitchens and dining facilities will undoubtedly make a significant difference to children’s health across the country.
“The school environment is critical in shaping a healthy lifestyle, which is why we are using the money from the soft drinks industry levy to double the PE and sport premium.
“This is another positive outcome from our world leading Childhood Obesity Plan.”
He added: “Healthy eating, physical activity and sport not only help tackle childhood obesity, but can also have a positive impact on pupils’ behaviour, attendance, concentration and attainment, helping children to reach their potential.”
The PE and sport premium is part of a series of programmes led by the DoE to improve healthy lifestyles among pupils and tackle childhood obesity.
Minister for Children and Families Robert Goodwill said: “As part of the Childhood Obesity Plan, we are working with other departments and agencies – including the Department of Health and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport – to make sure children are healthy and active.
“We want to make sure all children have a healthy and active lifestyle and it’s vital that we encourage this in our classrooms.
“That’s why we have doubled the Primary PE and Sport Premium to £320m per year to improve the quality of PE and sport in our schools.
“I’m also pleased that more pupils will benefit from our new £100m Healthy Pupil Capital Fund, which will help improve facilities, such as sports halls and playgrounds, as well as facilitate improvements to children’s physical and mental health by increasing and improving access to and use of relevant facilities, such as kitchens, dining facilities, changing rooms and sports facilities.”
As part of a wider programme of work, the DoE is also investing a further £26m in breakfast clubs. It hopes the money will encourage innovation and kick-start or improve breakfast clubs in at least 1,500 schools, with a focus on increasing provision for disadvantaged pupils.