Code of practice for participation in physical education

The following code of practice has been developed to ensure schools offer a consistent approach

The following code of practice has been developed to ensure schools offer a consistent approach to what is expected of pupils with regard to dress and participation in physical education in North Lanarkshire schools. It provides a set of guidelines which are clear enough to apply yet offer flexibility for individual schools to tailor to their own policies on dress.

Implementation

  • Head teachers should discuss this code of practice with physical education staff and with the school board
  • Following these discussions a written policy on participation and dress in physical education, based on this code of practice should be produced and agreed
  • A definitive statement on the school's policy on participation and dress in physical education should be included in the school handbook, supported by a reference to the North Lanarkshire policy
  • Schools should give consideration to issuing a letter to parents explaining the policy prior to its introduction
  • Make it clear that repeated non participation for reasons outlined in this code could be deemed a challenge to the head teacher's authority and in such circumstances the head teacher could justify the full use of the school disciplinary procedures
  • The Learning & Leisure Service will support head teachers in the implementation of this code of practice

It is deemed that all pupils who attend school will normally be able to participate in physical education. However on occasions exceptions may arise and only in these circumstances could physical education be considered inappropriate and impractical.

There are three categories of non participation.

Pupils who have an appropriate note from parents indicating a minor ailment  In such cases the school should have an appropriate form of activity which has been discussed and agreed and deemed reasonable and practical to offer such a pupil.

  • If the pupil refuses or fails to meet reasonable work targets then this may be regarded as a breach of discipline and handled in line school discipline procedures
  • A standard letter may be issued to the pupil and this should be signed by the parent indicating their awareness that repetition of this will result in disciplinary action being taken.

Pupils who have no kit or claim some form of minor ailment without a supporting letter signed by their parent or guardian

In such cases the pupil should take full part in the lesson as a consequence of the following steps:

  • The school may have spare kit and the pupil should be offered such kit as a first step
  • Subsequent failure to participate could result in the school disciplinary procedures being evoked
  • A standard letter may be issued to the pupil and this should be signed by the parent indicating their awareness that repetition of this will result in disciplinary action being taken.

Pupils who have kit or items pre-assessed as hazardous in terms of health and safety

In such cases:

  • The head teacher should discuss and agree with Physical Education staff as to how the code of practice should be interpreted in detail and outline action should be taken in each case
  • A standard letter could be issued to the pupil to be signed by the parent indicating that a failure to bring kit or failure to remove the offending article prior to the lesson could result in appropriate disciplinary action being taken

However it is essential that all physical education staff keep the appropriate member of the Senior Management Team informed as to actions taken, in line with school policy.

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