Physical Education

The teaching of Physical Education is based on the belief that this area makes a significant contribution to the growth and development of each individual through an extensive range of activities.

The principal aim is to create an environment in which sport is seen as an essential and enjoyable part of education. In this way, the skills learnt will allow students to pursue varied sporting interests at school, University and beyond, with participation becoming the norm throughout life. We aim to engage and challenge all pupils to be their best self through a breadth and depth of sports and physical activities. Sport, PE and physical activity has the capacity to enrich lives, by building physical and mental health, and boosting academic achievement. Whilst we all like to win, and it is motivating to do so, our primary aim as educators is to increase emotional resilience through sport, as well as promoting proactivity and enjoyment.

Our approach is very much in line with the latest research recommendations of early sports diversification and late specialisation. This ensures that a wider pattern of movements, skills and knowledge are developed, leading to well-rounded athletes who possess the movement strategies that are transferable across multiple sporting environments. In fact, it is thought that the number of training hours required to achieve elite performance is inversely proportional to the number of sports played during adolescence.

A recent consensus statement in the British Journal of Sports Medicine on reducing the risk of burnout and injury in youth sport, encourages the diversity of sports training during early to middle adolescence, alongside structured physical training programmes. Additionally, the National Athletic Trainers’ Association in America highlights the importance of physical conditioning programmes and delayed sport specialisation, to reduce the risk of paediatric injury.

Therefore, in most cases, keeping a wider participation across a breadth of sports is beneficial for long term success and wellbeing.

Benefits of PE, Sport and Physical Activity (Review of Literature by Loughborough University 2010)

  • Physical activity has a positive impact on self-esteem, anxiety, depression, mood, and wellbeing, all of which may impact on academic achievement.
  • PE, physical activity and sport have been shown to impact positively on the extent to which young people feel connected to their school; the aspirations of young people; the extent to which positive social behaviours exist within school; and the development of leadership and citizenship skills.
  • Pupils engaging in sport and physical activity achieve 10-20% higher GCSE’s.
  • Children and young people who are aerobically fit have higher academic scores.
  • Perceptual skills, attention and concentration are all improved by a bout of physical activity.
  • Participation in extra-curricular activities also has a positive effect on attainment.

The PE curriculum enables students to try and gain a level of competence in a wide range of activities – a practice that is proven to engender active habits for life, as well as helping to avoid sporting specialism too early. Curricular sport is taught by a team of experienced and dedicated specialist teachers. 

The programme is designed so that all students are able to acquire and build upon skills, in both individual and team activities, throughout Nursery to 11.

A great deal of emphasis is placed on cooperation and teamwork as well as on the competitive element of this area. All pupils from Nursery to Year 11 have compulsory Physical Education taught by full-time qualified staff as timetabled lessons.

Autumn (Term 1)

The first half of the term is dedicated to girls' Football and boys' Basketball. The second half of term is then divided between hockey, tag rugby and volleyball for boys and girls alike. The Primary year 3, 4, 5 have a term of swimming in their curriculum along with a unit of gymnastics, basic motor skills, basketball, racket skills and volleyball.

Spring (Term 2)

In the Secondary the emphasis is on Fitness and Running program, boys' Football and girls' Basketball. The Primary year 3, 4, 5 have cross country, invasion games, throwing and catch, striking and fielding.

Summer (Term 3)

Athletics dominates teaching in both Secondary and Primary in the beginning of the term, finishing with Softball and Tennis.

Inter-School fixtures and tournaments are organised throughout the school year for both boys and girls in Football, Basketball, Volleyball, Cross-Country and Athletics.

Key Stage 4 (Years 10 and 11) GCSE Physical Education

GCSE Physical Education, an optional and examined subject in addition to the timetabled PE for all students, is an exciting combination of the study of sport and physical activity in both practical and theoretical settings; on many occasions practice and theory are combined in interactive and action-packed lessons. The PE department follows the Cambridge specifications.

IB Diploma: Sports, Exercise and Health Science (SL)

St. Julian ́s has offered its students the IB Diploma's Sports Science course since 2007: we were one of the original twelve schools in the world piloting the course, which has become a popular and successful option.

The course aims to introduce students to some of the scientific components that
make up the study of Sport, Exercise and Health and it is divided into two parts. The Diploma Programme course in Sports, Exercise and Health Science involves study of the science that underpins physical performance.

The course incorporates the traditional disciplines of anatomy and physiology, biomechanics, psychology and nutrition, which are studied in the context of sport, exercise and health. Students will cover both core and option topics and carry out practical (experimental) investigations in both laboratory and field settings.

This will provide an opportunity to acquire the knowledge and understanding necessary to apply scientific principles to a critical analysis of human performance. Where relevant, the course will address issues of internationalism and ethics by considering sport, exercise and health relative to the individual and in a global context.

Career Opportunities

This challenging course incorporates aspects of Exercise Physiology, Anatomy, Nutrition and Psychology relating to the sports industry. If a student wishes to continue with SEHS at University the course provides access to a wide variety of sports-related courses including Sports Science, Sports Therapy, Sports Psychology and Education degrees.

These courses will help prepare students for a wide variety of careers in the Sport and Exercise industry as well as supporting careers involving media, psychology, development in the fields of teaching, physiotherapy, sports administration, and medicine.


ur purpose is to create a happy, secure and stimulating learning environment within which all members of our community can achieve their full potential and develop a commitment to lifelong learning.

Our purpose is to create a happy, secure and stimulating learning environment within which all members of our community can achieve their full potential and develop a commitment to lifelong learning.