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Clare Mount SpecialistSports College

Role Models and Catalysts for Change


In February 2020, the Youth Sport Trust; a children's charity working to ensure every child enjoys the life-changing benefits that come from play and sport are hosting their 25th-anniversary annual conference at The Ricoh Arena, Coventry. 


We were delighted to hear last week that we have been nominated; by the Trust itself for the 'Outstanding School' award.


Vicci Wells, Targeted Interventions Manager at the Youth Sport Trust contacted the school to say: "I would very much like to nominate Clare Mount for the YST Outstanding School award based on the amazing work I know you do, day in and day out across a whole range of YST programmes- and have done since the beginning!"


Clare Mount Specialist Sports College has been a Sports College since 2007.  Led brilliantly by Mr Allkins, and supported by Mrs Cooper-Shone and Mr Saunders, the Sports College has changed the lives of many Clare Mount and Wirral students and families through a brilliant calendar of events, competitions and training for schools; learning to include everyone in PE and Sport.  In 2010, Mr Keefe took on the mantle of leadership and established Clare Mount as a 'Project-Ability' school. Clare Mount's role became Merseyside-wide and helped to establish and drive the 'School Games' programme to include everyone and let all young people feel the power of sport. Thousands of teachers have been trained as a result of Project-Ability creating more opportunities for young people within the School Games. Clare Mount employed a School Games Organiser, meaning that all Clare Mount students would have the opportunity to take part in the School Games.


The PE department, led by Mr Stanley and Mrs Grayson became ever more involved in Youth Sport Trust programmes as Mr Stanley became a 'Lead PE Catalyst' to help schools around the UK understand how to create a PE curriculum for young people with autism and support them on their leadership journeys through Duke of Edinburgh or Skills Awards designed for young people with autism.  Mrs Webster is a former PE teacher and also became a PE 'Headteacher Ambassador' for the Youth Sport Trust and will be attending the conference as a proud ambassador and headteacher.  Mrs Grayson has become a national expert at removing barriers to PE and Sport for young people with autism through the use of her passport to PE and her activity carousel.  Mr Atkins has been a trailblazer for schools like Clare Mount making sure all young people at school take part in competitions according to their ability. 

Our dance programme with Mrs Corcoran and Mrs Poynton (including Para-Dance) is nationally recognised and showcases the role of dance for personal expression, happiness and positive mental health.  Mrs Kearsley has driven the 'Girls Active' programme here at Clare Mount over the past two years whilst Mr Gavin has made an incredible impact with the Active in Mind programme. Mrs Corcoran continues to deliver unbelievable opportunities locally for young people with additional needs in the School Games. Mr Byrne has joined us for the journey bringing all of his experience to school and making a real impact with the 'Active in Mind' mental health programme linked to physical activity, 'My Personal Best' character education programme which teaches life-skills through PE, and the Healthy Lifestyles Champions in post-16 who have gone on an incredible leadership journey giving them increased confidence and self-belief. 


All PE staff and PE teaching assistants support the ever popular Community Sports Night which brings the power of sport and the chance to try new sports to over 50 young people for over 30 weeks of the school term, whilst Mr White sits on the Department for Education's National Inclusion Steering Group and consults on behalf of all 50 national lead inclusion schools in the UK.  Mr Vasey and Mrs Rowland used their expertise to write and share a PE and Sport autism guide for the Youth Sport Trust (which has been shared through the NASEN National SEND gateway in the UK and with thousands of UK schools).


Our partnerships with Liverpool John Moores University and Liverpool Hope University allows us to watch their very best students work as teachers or sport development officers. 

We are the only school in the country that regularly works with five universities around inclusion in PE and Sport through our Youth Sport Trust status. National award after national award have followed, and Clare Mount's ability to work with anyone and everyone means that our young people get first access to the very best of the Youth Sport Trust's programmes. Governors at Clare Mount value highly sports college status.


As Merseyside Lead Inclusion School for the Youth Sport Trust, we are incredibly proud of our long partnership with the charity. Our Inclusion 2020 Paralympic Learning and Discovery Festival in 2019 reached over 100 young people and was the headline event for the UK's National School Sport Week. This year we have trained over 120 apprentices from Little League Sports to deliver Paralympic Learning and Discovery Festivals for the School Games.  We are the main provider of PE and Sport Inclusive Practice training on Wirral and Merseyside. 


Recently, we created a twenty-five school partnership with Sport England and the Activity Alliance to train secondary PE teachers and to offer more PE and Sport within local secondary schools. We are especially proud of our partnerships with Cheshire Cricket Board, Hive Youth Zone, Greenbank Sports Academy, Tranmere Rovers in the Community, South Wirral High School, Prenton High School for Girls, Weatherhead High School, Woodchurch High School, Ridgeway High School, Bebington High School, LFC Foundation, Wirral School Games, Edsential, Wirral Evolutions, Liverpool School Sport Partnership, our primary PE and Sport cluster of schools, local special-school partnership and many, many more!


Here is a selection of just six work strands (of many) of our Youth Sport Trust programmes this year:


Find Your Tribe - a female students with autism student voice project with LJMU 3rd year student Tiarna Bithell which aims to support the PE department and our female students with autism to connect with PE, Sport and Physical Activity.


Active in Mind - an inspiring mental health through physical activity programme with Neil Danns from Wheels Extreme.


Special Olympics Motor Activities Training Programme - this programme creates a School Games opportunity for young people from Foxfield School, Stanley School, Meadowside School and Elleray Park school.


My Personal Best is a special school character education programme - working with Orrets Meadow we are looking at what character education looks like in a primary special school to give those young people the life skills for transition to secondary school.


Healthy Lifestyles Champions 'Combat Club' - a programme to show how the power of combat sports can help young people with autism and emotional regulation challenges to be able to use sport to help manage themselves.


Active Across Ages - an inter-generational and employability project involving post-16 ASDAN students, year 11 Duke of Edinburgh students, year 10 sports leaders, Leasowe Primary School, Wirral School Games, Wirral Golf Development  and Anchor Care Homes, Wirral to help combat loneliness and poor well-being in older and younger people using the power of shared sport and physical activity experiences.


Here's to the next 25 years!