Head of Sport – Brilliant Basics at Downsend

Over the last four years there has been a dramatic improvement at the school on the sports pitches and this is all down to a change to the provision of sport and a team of staff who embraced it whole heartedly.

It was evident that sport was enjoyed by all at the school but its success was often attributed to the quality and experiences of the pupils of club sport within the local area and it was this that the school wanted to change and produce the quality from within.

The school has always been fortunate to acquire high quality sports teacher and by embracing a new culture and approach the school is now successful from Year 2 up to Year 8.  This new brilliant basics culture, along with continuing to provide outstanding coaching and endless opportunities for the more senior pupils, has seen the school take ownership of provisions introducing specialist sports teacher leading pre-prep lessons, improving after school sports opportunities and practises and introducing Saturday Sports for all pupils from Reception to Year 2.

With a ‘sport for all’ philosophy, the Saturday Sport drop in sessions provide our younger pupils with the opportunity to try a variety of sports chosen to develop the fundamental of co-ordination, agility, balance, decision making and team spirit whilst having fun.  The club has inspired a love for sport from an early age and has helped develop teamwork, communication, commitment and resilience for our children.

Alongside these initiatives, we have hard-working and passionate sports teachers who have embraced the brilliant basics model and, in doing so, have raised the bar of expectation.  We now regularly enjoy sporting success but what is important is how this has been achieved.

In the past it has been evident that there was the mindset that children of such a young age were not capable of understanding the complexities of team formation, spatial awareness, communication and decision making.  To address this the sports staff at Downsend used their balance of enthusiasm, self-belief and perseverance to crack the glass ceiling.

Whether it be in Sport, Music, Art, Drama or Academia, children are capable of more than we expect at times and it is our special job to inspire these young minds and aim high.  As we enter a new era of providing education through to 16, sport is also entering its own new era under the headship of our new Head of Sport, Jill Oliver who has joined us with recent international experience and will drive to further enhance the quality, opportunity and breadth for all.

Recent sporting successes to highlight include:

Football

  • 2014: U13 Surrey Football Cup Winners
  • 2015: U13 Surrey Football Cup Winners, U7 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U7 Lanesborough Football Tournament Winners, U8 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners,
  • 2016: U7 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U8 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U8 Cumnor House Football Tournament Winners, U9 Hawthorns Football Tournament Winners, U9 Downsend Football Tournament Winners, U10 RSM Football Tournament Winners, U11 Surrey Football Cup Winners
  • 2017 U7 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U7 Hawthorns Football Tournament Winners, U7 Parkside Football Tournament Winners, U8 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U9 Hawthorns Football Tournament Winners, U10 Charterhouse Football Tournament Winners,
  • 2018: U7 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U8 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners, U9 Hawthorn Football Tournament Winners, U10 Cranmore Football Tournament Winners.

Rugby

  • U11 Rugby V11s Milbourne Lodge Tournament Winners

Hockey

  • 2014: U11 Hawthorns Hockey Tournament Winners, U12 IAPS National Netball Finalist
  • 2017: U11 Danes Hill Hockey Tournament Winners
  • 2018: U12 Cranleigh Hockey Festival Winners, U11 Downsend Hockey Festival Winners

Netball

  • 2016: U13 Danes Hill Netball Tournament Winners
  • 2017: U13 Danes Hill Netball Tournament Winners

Swimming

  • 2015: IAPS Swimming Individual U11Freestyle Champion, U11 Freestyle Relay Team Winners, U10 National Boys Biathlon Finals
  • 2016: U12 IAPS National Freestyle Champion, Surrey U11 Freestyle Relay Team Winners
  • 2017: ESSA Swimming – Surrey Round – Girls Freestyle Winners, 1st place at IAPS, individual winner at IAPS National Swim Finals, Surrey U11 Freestyle Relay Team Winners, U10 Boys British Modern Biathlon Winners

Athletics

  • 2017: London Area Athletics seven 1st place winners

Rounders / Cricket

  • 2016: U13 Rounders Tournament @ Hawthorns Winners
  • 2017: U11 Danes Hill Girls Cricket Tournament Winners, U11 Girls Surrey Star Burst Cricket Runners Up

 

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