Active Schools: Success Story – Belle Vue Park PS
Key Priority Area: Quality Schools Sport
Belle Vue Park Primary School (PS) is a small suburban school of 150 students in Glenroy. The student population is largely from EAL background and their participation rate in recreational and/or organised sport is low.
The school itself has undergone substantial redevelopment with new buildings and grounds and an extremely supportive staff team who care and cater for the students with dedication and respect for their history and culture.
To support the philosophy of ‘focusing on the emotional connections first, and then learning follows’ by engaging students in active play in the playground via improved access and opportunities to transition into community sport. This also involves engaging families and providing opportunities for families to feel safe and nurtured in a familiar setting.
Belle Vue Park Primary School identified that while many of the boys in Year 6 were engaged in community sport, this was not so for the girls. Student voice identified netball as a sport students associated with fun and inclusion. Staff offered the opportunity for students to train at lunchtime, which was taken up with great enthusiasm.
Students were up-skilled beyond traditional physical education and sport lessons, and staff spent much of their lunchtime with the students, building teamwork, naturing student/staff relationships, expanding students’ understanding of the rules and developing game sense. Over time, the growth of student confidence and capacity, led to a team entering the local community competition.
Links to community were established through staff going beyond their initial work developing the team's sporting skills, to engaging with the families and local businesses to seek sponsorship for team uniforms and entry fees. A link was developed with, Darebin Netball Association and the team entered a weekly competition.
Staff assisted with the transportation of the students to the games, as parents were unable to do this much of the time. The netball association worked closely with umpires, teachers and parents to ensure every member of the team was well supported on court, could learn whilst playing and felt safe in the competitive environment.
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