Whilst the value of the PE and sport premium grant is small compared to other funding, the sport premium can have large benefits for the progression of pupils’ confidence and ability in regards to PE and sports. Schools need to ensure that they have used the sport premium funding to full effect. The same level of accountability is needed to ensure that the funding is having an impact upon pupils.

What should the grant be spent on?


As with any funding from the government, every governing board or academy trust needs to show that the PE and sport premium grant has an impact within the school. This funding should be used to improve pedagogical practice within the school, and schools should be able to demonstrate how the grant is used to support gifted and talented pupils as well as pupils with special educational needs.

As part of the government’s Childhood Obesity Plan, a huge emphasis is now being placed on getting children to become active for at least 30 minutes a day. Schools need to ensure that all PE lessons promote active learning and that all staff members supervising lunchtimes are equipped to ensure that pupils are active throughout.

Schools must use the funding to make additional and sustainable improvements to the quality of PE and sport they offer. This means that they should use the premium to:

  • Develop or add to the PE and sport activities that your school already offers.
  • Make improvements to the current teaching of PE that will benefit pupils joining the school in future years.

For example, schools could use their funding to:

  • Hire qualified sports coaches to work with teachers.
  • Provide existing staff with training or resources to help them teach PE and sport more effectively.
  • Introduce new sports or activities and encourage more pupils to take up sport.
  • Support and involve the least active children by running or extending school sports clubs, holiday clubs and Change4Life clubs.
  • Run sport competitions.
  • Increase pupils’ participation in the School Games.
  • Run sports activities with other schools.
  • Encourage pupils to take on leadership or volunteer roles that support sport and physical activity within the school.
  • Provide additional swimming provision targeted to pupils not able to meet the swimming requirements of the national curriculum.
  • Embed physical activity into the school day through active travel to and from school, active playgrounds and active teaching.

The DfE proposes that sport premium funding should be used to train teachers and lunchtime staff to ensure that pupils are active.

Schools are also required to publish how many pupils within their Year 6 cohort are meeting the national curriculum requirement to swim competently, confidently and proficiently over a distance of at least 25 metres, use a range of strokes effectively and perform safe self-rescue in different water-based situations.

Sport premium spending plan


The sport premium spending plan needs to have the same detail as any other spending plan. School leaders need to have measurable impact milestones, so that the impact of the grant can be judged. As with any accountability measure, leaders need to be challenged on the impact.

Below is a typical example of a best practice spending plan template.

Academic year:


Funding allocated:


Sport premium objective

Key action


Planned impact upon pupils

Evidence of impact

Sustainability/ next steps

To instil in pupils a love of sport and physical activity

Hold a netball tournament


Pupils will enjoy the tournament and be keen for future competitive sporting opportunities

There was a lot of interest in the event and many pupils took part

Ask pupils whether they would be interested in any more sporting competitions being held


As can be seen from the template plan, the school must have a clear focus on what they want to spend the funding on.

As an example of good practice, schools have used specialist PE coaches to train and mentor all lunchtime supervisors so that all staff are equipped to help make children active.

How can schools measure and evaluate the impact?


To enable schools to measure the impact of the sport premium, leaders must have audited the current sports provision within their school. Whilst this audit or self-review can be difficult, it is important as it provides an important benchmark for the school.

The following format provides a good starting point for a sports provision audit.

Using the template below, identify your use of the sport premium to date and the priorities for its use in the coming year.

Key priorities to date:

Key achievements (what worked well):

Key learning (what will change next year):

What is the school’s key priority in terms of PE and sports?



What evidence is there of the impact of the objectives?

Does this impact reflect value for money in terms of budget allocated?


School leaders completing the audit should try and focus on the following key indicators:

  • The engagement of all pupils in regular physical activity – kick-starting healthy, active lifestyles
  • The profile of PE and sport being raised across the school as a tool for whole-school improvement
  • Increased confidence, knowledge and skills of all staff in teaching PE and sport
  • A broader experience of a range of sports and activities offered to all pupils
  • Increased participation in competitive sports


How can schools evidence the use of the sport premium?


Schools must use a range of evidence to ensure that the premium has had an impact. Some of the following can be used as good practice:

  • A regular review of the sports premium (many teaching schools offer this package)
  • Pupil interviews on the impact upon enjoyment of the PE curriculum
  • A profile of the impact of the premium on teaching (for example, percentage of PE teaching that has moved from good to outstanding) 
  • Analysis of how active children are at lunchtimes
  • A PE portfolio listing the range of PE activities
  • Tracking percentages of pupils taking up extra-curricular PE
  • Tracking data to highlight the percentage of pupils working at age related expectations
  • Parental surveys on the PE curriculum
  • Governor or trustee learning walks focussing on PE provision
  • Staff questionnaires on the impact of the CPD aspect to support their PE teaching
  • Quality marks for sports provision


The Ofsted perspective


Inspectors are required to assess and report on how effectively school leaders use this new funding and measure its impact on outcomes for pupils, and how effectively governors hold them to account for this.

This judgement should be based on evidence gained from meetings with school leaders, including governors, observations of lessons and/or extra-curricular sports clubs, and discussions with pupils. Inspectors should also review information about the PE and sport premium on the school’s website prior to an inspection.

During inspection, inspectors must challenge school leaders on whether this funding is being used to cover planning, preparation and assessment arrangements, or to provide standard swimming lessons, as both of these should be funded from existing school budgets. It is, however, acceptable to use the grant to provide additional swimming provision targeted at pupils who are not able to meet the swimming requirements of the national curriculum.



DfE, ESFA (2014) ‘PE and sport premium for primary schools’ <> [Accessed: 5 March 2018]