Scottish Rugby Schools Week recommences for fourth instalment
Scottish Rugby Schools Week supported by Saltire Energy returns this week, as Scottish Rugby reaffirms its commitment to growing school and youth rugby across the country and strengthening school-to-club relationships.
Over the course of the week, rugby will reach school communities across the country from Ardrossan to Kirkwall, Elgin to Galashiels and many more locations in between.
In the first ever instalment of the programme in September 2021, more than 16,000 pupils, boys and girls, from 287 schools engaged with rugby.
Since then, more than 70,000 pupils have engaged in one of the four instalments of the programme, with the number of schools involved this year reaching over 360.
Some 113 secondary and 248 primary schools have signed up to participate with 50 percent* of those schools’ delivering rugby for the first time in at least over 12-months.
Planned schools’ events to be delivered throughout the week include festivals of rugby, training sessions with local rugby clubs and Development Officers, and classroom-based sessions.
To support schools, Scottish Rugby has provided in-person CPD training for teachers across five different locations in advance of the week-long programme. Last month for example, Scottish Rugby delivered a session to 20 school teachers from across the city of Dundee.
In addition to this, learning resources have been circulated to all participating schools which have been designed specifically to enable schools to facilitate rugby activity in any age group, irrelevant of playing and coaching experience, and in-line with the Curriculum for Excellence.
Moreover, Scottish Rugby will be supporting schools on a regional and national basis with in-person support to help with delivery of activity and help build teachers’ confidence and skills in delivering rugby.
Gavin Scott, Scottish Rugby’s Director of Rugby Development, said: “We’re now in our fourth iteration of Scottish Rugby Schools Week, and it has fast become a cornerstone in the season calendar for development opportunities and increasing participation in the game, particularly at Secondary school level.
“We launched our State School Strategy six months ago, and our vision within that strategy is for state schools in Scotland to enjoy delivering safe and fun rugby sessions as a key part of the curriculum, with visible links into the club game. Scottish Rugby Schools Week plays a huge part in supporting that goal.
“The programme also allows more young people to enjoy the benefits of rugby and promotes wellbeing through an inclusive sport where there is a place for everyone, no matter their gender, ability or level of fitness.
“I’m looking forward to seeing some of the fantastic activity happening across the country, I hope everyone has a great time.”
Taking part in Scottish Rugby Schools Week for the second time is Wallace High School, a state school previously attended by Scotland International, Finn Russell.
Excited to begin their participation this week, is P.E teacher, Chris Jubb said: “Wallace High like countless other schools is proud to get involved with Scottish Rugby Schools Week because, it provides an opportunity to showcase the breadth and depth of just how fantastic the sport is.
“It provides a platform in which pupils can get their hands on the ball, be surrounded by friends in a mixed and inclusive environment and enjoy the unique thrills of Rugby that make it completely unique.
“We at Wallace are looking forward to seeing our senior sports leaders deliver sessions to our junior school, nine school of rugby sessions for boys and girls. We also have an away fixture to Preston Lodge where our S1, S2 and S3 Boys will be competing against another strong state school who share our passion for the game and driving it in their school. We are looking forward to a big, exciting week!”
The programme is once again supported by Saltire Energy, a leading rental specialist in oil and gas equipment to the global energy sector.
Mike Loggie, Chief Executive of Saltire Energy, said: “Saltire Energy is delighted to once again be supporting the next generation of young Scottish players through our partnership with Scottish Rugby Schools Week.
“Engaging the future players of rugby, especially following the challenging times of the pandemic, is more important than ever and the part that sport plays in our lives is vital to this. Saltire Energy takes huge pride in supporting Scottish Rugby and being part of the community that benefits from this fantastic sport.”