Now we have the reopening plan, we must focus on getting as much sport on for kids as possible. With this in mind, in the coming days the Education Secretary and I are bringing together experts from across the world of sport, education and business, to work with them to get kids fit and fully active over the next few months, both at school and during the holidays.
We’ll start with the basics. What are the critical foundation blocks that kids may have missed, and how can we help them catch up? Just as we can’t let children fall behind on numeracy and literacy, we can’t afford to neglect their “physical literacy” either. Learning to jump, throw and catch is as much part of normal school life as double maths.
Whilst there will be a lot of challenges, I believe we also have a real opportunity. There has been a tangible shift in the country on thinking about our physical and mental health this last year. Many of us are now deeply attached to our daily walk or run, and the lockdown has brought home how vital and cathartic exercise can be amid the stress and bustle of our daily lives.
But I want to go further. Just as major global sports events of the past have galvanised a new generation of budding young athletes and sports enthusiasts, wouldn’t it be great if Covid could be a catalyst for a new era of sport and activity? What better legacy could we ever create from a global health crisis than a fitter, healthier Britain?
That’s why I’m determined to get children moving as much as possible in the next few months. We plan to refresh our Government sport strategy in the coming months to put physical activity at the heart of our recovery, and as we begin exiting lockdown, I want to see kids across Britain springing back from the pandemic. It starts with schools on March 8 – and thankfully now there isn’t long to wait.