§ 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.