HC Deb 29 March 1994 vol 240 cc789-90
14. Mr. Spring

To ask the Secretary of State for Education what importance is attached to physical education in the national curriculum; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Robin Squire

Physical education is a foundation subject in the national curriculum. As such, it is compulsory for all pupils aged five to 16 years in maintained schools.

Mr. Spring

Is my hon. Friend aware that some 71 per cent. of 14-year-olds receive fewer than two hours' physical education a week in school? Does he agree that sport and exercise, as opposed to the watching of videos and television, are desirable for young people and should be encouraged?

Mr. Squire

My hon. Friend must be right about the importance of games. As I am sure that he knows, it is compulsory for five to 14-year-olds to have such games. He may be interested to know that Ofsted, the independent inspectorate, recently collected evidence which showed that, on average, PE took between 7 and 12 per cent. of curriculum time.

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