Forbes Public School has celebrated a stellar year in the sporting arena.
Last year the school had 16 students represent in school sports at state level.
Georgina Stitt represented in swimming, cross country and athletics;
Henry Hodges and Harry Scott in AFL and Athletics, Harry also broke a western district record in his sport;
Stephanie Behan played tennis and was western PSSA soccer team captain;
Ella Greenhalgh in athletics and cricket;
Tess Worland, Andie Hodder, Jemma Hodder, Isla Worland, Ella Nicholls, Georgie Coote, Quade Facey, Sarah Nightingale and Fyn Harrison were all off to the state swimming carnival.
Fyn came seventh in the state and was selected as a Primary School Sports Association Western team relay member, he also broke a western district record in his sport.
Alex Boyton and Tom Steele-Park achieved state level in atheltics, Tom was selected as PSSA Athletics Western Team Captain.
It’s an outstanding level of representation and teacher Katie Stitt is particularly celebrating.
She’s now been teaching sports skills classes at the school – to students kindergarten to Year 6 – for 10 years and says dedicating time to sport is paying off.
Students have sports skills classes while their classroom teachers have regular programmed planning time.
Mrs Stitt hopes the sports skills lessons will promote a life-long love of physical activity and engagement in sport.
“It gives them an opportunity to get out of the classroom, be active, learn team work and be exposed to huge variety of games,” she said.
“Without this exposure students may not discover their strengths.”
Units of work are taught to all classes from kinder to Year 6.
“For example, at the moment all years are learning and practicing their ball skills,” Mrs Stitt said.
“I am really diligent about correct technique right from kindergarten.
“I want them to feel confident enough to try out for a town team, join in at the park or be engaged in high school.”
Students receive instruction in every sport, fitness skills, gymnastics, dance and even lessons in lifestyle sports like yoga, “boot camp” and skipping.
FPS received thousands of dollars in grant money for sporting programs and equipment from The Premier’s Sporting Challenge and Sporting Schools Grants.
Experts from the community were hired to run clinics in Auskick and Golf.
FPS also hosted a huge community Mini Olympics and Jump Rope for Heart Skipping Show resulting in $5000 being raised for The Heart Foundation.
Last year they entered teams in a number of PSSA knock-out competitions: cricket, where the girls’ team were Western District runners up; tennis; netball; AFL; basketball; touch football; rugby league; and soccer.
FPS attended Gala Days in Netball and League Tag and competed in the League Peachey/Richardson Shield and the NSW Netball Schools’ Cup.
“I used to lecture to university students studying to be primary teachers about the benefit of a whole school approach to physical activity,” Mrs Stitt said.
“I encouraged them to prioritise PDHPE and refrain from leaving it out due to a crowded curriculum.
“Now I am actually in a school that has done this for a phenomenal 10 years.
“I am witnessing first hand what primary students with a specialist PDHPE (Personal Development, Health and Physical Education) program look like.
“They know how to move, how to play, how to work as a team, how to work hard to develop skills, to receive feedback and modify their actions in order to achieve their goals.”