Denton Community College ‘inspirational’ Olympics sports days a roaring success

With less than 30 days to go until the Olympic Games get underway in Rio, pupils at a Manchester school are planning sporting flourishes of their own, involving members of the wider community.

Students at Denton Community College have been busy hosting a series of Olympic-themed sports days with local primary school children, and will next week work at the other end of the age spectrum when they visit the residents of Greatwood House Care Home.

It all comes as part of the school’s involvement with the Get Set for Community Action programme, which aims to help thousands of 14-19 year olds strengthen relationships between young people and their communities.

Created by the British Olympic Foundation and British Paralympic Association, the programme has invited plenty of schools to get involved to help celebrate this year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games.

And for Hayley Duffy, the school’s director of community learning, the pupils’ enthusiasm to engage with the project has seen it become a great success.

“The college has delivered lots of initiatives, including an inspirational day to over 300 year five pupils,” she said.

“Our Action Leads delivered all the festival activities on that day and also cross-curricular activities with our nutrition and food technology department as well.

“We’ve have also had them involved with our year six induction days, when we ran a ‘Road to Rio’ festival which included activities such as seated basketball, seated volleyball, tennis and badminton to name just a few.

“Next week, they are going to be working on our inter-generational project, so they will be going into a care home and running activities such as armchair aerobics for them.”

Such is the students’ dedication and enthusiasm for the Get Set for Community Action project, they have even volunteered their time during the precious summer holidays.

And Ms Duffy admits she couldn’t be prouder with how her pupils have grown and developed.

“Over the summer, we have our year seven transition camps for all the new students who are coming to us in September,” said Ms Duffy.

“For that, they will be working alongside Active Tameside running lots of events, including making an Olympic pizza!

“They will be doing football, basketball, badminton and a multi-skills festival as well.

“They have learnt so much from their engagement with the Get Set project. They have picked up new organisation skills, developed new knowledge and understanding of different sports and activities, and they are cooperating a lot better with each other.

“It’s probably taught them to be more resilient too; they now know that if something goes wrong, they can adapt it, and there has been a massive boost in their confidence.

“It’s certainly going to benefit them in the long run. They’re getting much more involved in school life and other initiatives, so they are very well known in the community now.”

Get Set for Community Action is a new UK-wide programme for young people and their communities created by the British Olympic Foundation and British Paralympic Association and made possible thanks to the Big Lottery Fund. To find out more visit:

Image courtesy of Jon Butterworth via YouTube, with thanks.

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