Monday 17 February 2020

Rendcomb College expert insight: The importance of sport in your child’s education

With traditional education and league tables no longer being the only factor parents consider when picking a school, Rendcomb College has been speaking to SoGlos about the importance of sports education, and how it compliments your child’s pastoral care.


While league tables and facilities might be some of the most obvious things to consider when choosing a school for your child, pastoral care, wellbeing and mental health provisions are ever more at the forefront of parents’ minds.

It’s something that Rendcomb College in Cirencester is well aware of, and alongside its brand-new sports facilities which opened in autumn of 2018, the school takes its pastoral responsibility very seriously.

Speaking to Matt Walton, head of sport at the College, SoGlos discovers why sports education is at the heart of Rendcomb’s wellbeing programme.


What is so important about sports education in schools? It seems to have become more of the school’s lifestyle, rather than just giving pupils an hour to play sport?

For us, participation is what we’re all about. We want to make sure that all our students get something out of doing a bit of sport, and it’s not just about the top players performing well.

We want to encourage those that might not be so keen on sport, we want to deliver the same level of programme to them as we do to the better sporting athletes in the school.

We want everyone to gain something from the experience, so we can promote a lifestyle of sport and they can then continue playing sport and keeping fit after they leave Rendcomb.

Wellbeing is also something that’s being discussed more when it comes to schools. What does it mean to you?

Wellbeing is something that’s very important here at the school. We have to look after our students pastorally, and care for their health, mental health and their nutrition.

So, it can be things like making sure they have a balanced diet, ensuring they’re getting enough sleep, that they’re setting themselves achievable goals – not just sporting ones.

Other things are healthy eating, mental aspects like how they will improve themselves, and it’s our job to help encourage them to take on that responsibility, while we guide them in the right direction.

If we can achieve that the students, and sports athletes will gain more as they’re more equipped for life than if we as adults just forced them down a certain path.

It’s worth noting that there’s also has an important link between keeping well and doing well in the classroom, too.

It’s clear that people getting a bit of exercise, eating well and sleeping well also benefit in the classroom – they work better and can concentrate better too.


What would be your advice to parents looking for good sports facilities at a school?

It’s all dependent on your child, and you’ve got to find the best environment for your child to be the best that they can be.

We would like to say that we can offer an all-round education in terms of lifestyle, wellbeing, pastoral care and on the sports field, as well as academically.
I’d be looking at a school which measures success on how much they improve, rather than how many games of cricket they win, for example.

It’s very much a personal choice dependent on the child though, so it’s hard to pinpoint.

What facilities can Rendcomb offer to pupils?

We’ve got two new sports facilities actually, our AstroTurf was relayed in the summer which has enabled us to deliver a better programme for hockey, and for tennis in the summer. That’s a huge bonus that now hockey can be played more often, so students can improve their game.

We’ve also just introduced a performance gym and we’ve employed a strength and conditioning coach who has been employed to deliver a programme to all our students as we recognise that’s an important part of development for sportspeople and athletes right now.

Gym is massive now, and it’s something that more and more people are into, so Rendcomb has recognised that to help people operate competitively this gives them the best opportunities to improve and compete.


What can parents do at home to help ensure their children have access to sports and wellbeing facilities if they don’t have the support of a school like Rendcomb College?

I think it’s important that throughout a student’s life there is a good routine with good patterns. So that’s going to bed at the same time each night. Some people do need more sleep than others, so obviously it’s individual, but it’s important that a good routine is stuck to.

Helping children to understand the right things to eat so that they’re well fuelled to succeed in the academic or sporting arena is important, and also encouraging them to set up time for homework, or a time to set their own future goals. It’s always important to encourage this to come from them, rather than forcing them into it.


For more information see Rendcomb College, call (01285) 831213 or visit rendcombcollege.org.uk directly.

© SoGlos
Monday 11 March 2019

More interviews you might like...

Discover the best way to cook pasta with SoGlos’s expert insight with Toni’s Kitchen.

Toni’s Kitchen expert insight: Why spaghetti bolognese probably isn't from Italy

Find out why spaghetti bolognese isn’t actually an Italian dish, whether or not you should really use salt when cooking pasta,...

Find out how to reduce party-planning stress with Oasis Events.

Oasis Events expert insight: How to make planning your next celebration less stressful

With so many aspects to planning a party, it can all get a bit stressful, especially if you’ve never done it before. SoGlos...

The Isbourne in Cheltenham is a wellbeing centre home to a range of courses and classes to help aid mental and physical health.

The Isbourne expert insight: everything you need to know about Feng Shui

Use an ancient Chinese practice to update your home with tips from Gloucestershire’s answer to Marie Kondo.

The Isbourne in Cheltenham is a wellbeing centre home to a range of courses and classes to help aid mental and physical health.

The Isbourne expert insight: Why 2020 should be your year to try meditation and mindfulness

If you’re looking to focus more on self-care and your mental health in 2020, SoGlos has been finding out how meditation and...

Discover winter gardening tips from expert Glenn Satterthwaite from The Fairview Gardener.

The Fairview Gardener expert insight: Everything you need to know about winter gardening

As the harshness of winter approaches, find out how you can protect your garden from frost, snow and cold weather.

Unmissable highlights