Danny Burton is a former secondary school teacher and senior leader, having worked in the sport and PE environment for 15 years. In his role with The Youth
Sport Trust, Danny is responsible for the development and improvement of PE and School Sport at a national level within secondary schools and works within
the Charity's PE and Achievement team. He holds a Master's Degree in Advanced Educational Practice, which focused on transition and student voice. He has
been involved in training NQTs and trainees from a range of providers, embedding student leadership across schools, partnership development and developing
teaching and learning. He is author of 'Teach Now! Physical Education'.
"Whilst the world eulogises about the 'nation's PE teacher' - let us stop, (but not for too long!), and take a moment to consider the impact of COVID-19 on
the status and position of Physical Education (PE) within our schools.
First and foremost, let me say, well done to all of our counties Primary Schools – great job in getting our young people active at a time when we are being
encouraged to sit on our sofas with no better excuse to do as little possible. Joe Wicks has captured the hearts of the nation and seems to be appealing to
both primary and secondary ages. With over 15 million viewers in his first week, not only is he getting the nation up-and-ready at 9am every weekday, but
he's surely getting more people, more active, more often, which is a winning formula that any PE enthusiast wants to hear about.
Furthermore, teachers and coaches across the world have been sharing ideas and innovative ways to stay home and stay active. At the Youth Sport Trust,
free-to-access 'Home Learning' activities have been added on a daily basis – attracting over 48,000 webpage visits in the first week of lockdown, and over
100,000 downloads to this date.
Alongside this, another workforce prominent in the School Sport sector; our School Games Organisers, have been tasked with ensuring the local needs of
their communities are met during this challenging time. Regional campaigns have been launched throughout the last week to ensure that young people continue
to experience the physical and emotional benefits of daily physical / sporting activities.
When considering the impact of this pandemic, a number of whole school priorities will arise, such as, improving student's mental wellbeing, encouraging
social interactions (whilst probably maintain elements of social distancing), stress management, and dealing with uncertainty – could PE be well-positioned
to contribute to an effective and pro-active solution for schools?
Many teachers are juggling the challenge of setting online 'lessons' alongside the daily check-in's with vulnerable or key worker pupils in school. For the
parents, it's a case of what can keep my child (or multiple children of varying ages and ability levels) engaged whilst I'm also working myself or keeping
on top of home / family life. So, my main message to you all is: "Please stay safe and look after yourselves and your loved
Check out the Youth Sport Trust, free to access 'Home Learning' activities by clicking HERE.