Six Bedfordshire academies have demonstrated their commitment to PE and sport after earning prestigious awards.

The Bedfordshire Schools' Trust academies have earned School Games Mark, a government-led national awards scheme.

Gothic Mede in Arlesey and Robert Bloomfield in Shefford are celebrating platinum awards, Etonbury in Arlesey, Langford Village and Pix Brook in Stotfold earned gold awards, while Campton took home silver.

The Comet: Staff and pupils from Langford Village Academy with their certificate.Staff and pupils from Langford Village Academy with their certificate. (Image: Bedfordshire Schools' Trust)

All six academies work closely with the Redborne School Sport Partnership, a collaboration of nearly 60 schools across Central Bedfordshire which focuses on delivering the School Games programme.

The Comet: Campton Academy receive their award from Andy CavillCampton Academy receive their award from Andy Cavill (Image: Bedfordshire Schools' Trust)

Andy Cavill, partnership manager and School Games organiser, said: “The School Games Mark celebrates each school’s provision for PE and school sport, and helps demonstrate to governors and senior leadership that they are on the right track and promoting health and wellbeing to children.

“In their applications, each school has to reach a certain level in a set of key criteria which determines whether they get a Bronze, Silver or Gold award. For schools that are more established in the scheme and have had Gold for at least four years, they can then be awarded Platinum status.

“The criteria changes slightly year-on-year, but includes things like the number of hours of PE on the curriculum, extracurricular provision, plus engaging in both intra-school and inter-school competition.”

Pix Brook Academy, which only opened in 2019, has received its first School Games Mark.

Head of PE Jay Szwajbak said: “This is our first year of applying and I’m thrilled that we have gained Gold status.

“It’s good to have this recognition for what we have achieved in a short period of time, which is focused on increasing the participation of our young people in physical activity.

“Our extracurricular attendances have been through the roof this year, with 75 per cent of our pupils attending clubs and over half representing the school in competition.”

The School Games Mark launched in 2012 to reward schools for their commitment to the development of competition across their school and into the community.

Participating in this process allows schools to evaluate their PE provision and assists them in developing an action plan for future progress.