Minister Foley launches Active Schools Week 2022 promoting wellbeing in school communities
Minister for Education Norma Foley TD today launched details of this year’s Active School Week.
National Active School Week #ASW22 takes place from 3-6 May. All schools are encouraged to build Active School Week into their annual school calendars. It is important also that all Active School Week activities are both fun and inclusive.
Minister Foley said: “I am delighted to launch Active School Week for 2022 and I encourage all schools to take part in this worthwhile initiative. This is an ideal opportunity for schools to work together with children, parents and the broader community to become more physically active which benefits overall wellbeing as well as teaching and learning. I want to wish everyone taking part in #ASW22 an enjoyable week of active fun.”
Minister of State for Public Health, Wellbeing & the National Drugs Strategy, Frank Feighan TD said: “The promotion of physical activity is one of my priorities as Minister for Public Health and Wellbeing. It is vitally important that we encourage children and young people to get into the habit of being active from an early age. This is a behaviour that will benefit them for the rest of their lives. The Active School Flag has been a key component of our wider Healthy Ireland goals in terms of improving children’s activity levels and wider health and wellbeing; it has been great to see it go from strength to strength and to expand its reach. We are delighted to have the opportunity to support Active School Flag, through the Healthy Ireland Fund and in partnership with our colleagues in education.
Schools are asked to consider strengthening their links with local clubs and physical activity providers to raise awareness about the breath of physical activity opportunities that exist in local communities.
This year schools are encouraged to look to their local communities for a local (or national) physical activity role model, and to invite this local hero to set a physical activity challenge for students and staff during national Active School Week, on Friday, May 6th.
The #ASW22 Active Every Day Challenge encourages both school communities and families to work together to help more children and young people gain more active minutes every day. The challenge for schools is to find three different ways to energise the school day. Teachers are encouraged to find ways to teach subjects in a more physically active way and, where possible, to bring learning outdoors.
The Irish Heart Foundation has created interactive Bizzy Breaks especially for #ASW22 to help schools integrate short physical activity breaks into the school day. Research shows that physically active children find it easier to concentrate and focus and enjoy school more.
As part of #ASW22 schools are also asked to replace written homework with Daily Physical Activity Challenges. These challenges could be set by members of staff, sports organisations and/or by local or national role models.
This year Cycling Ireland are encouraging schools to create a cycling obstacle course on their school grounds.
Parents/guardians are asked to help young people to continue to find ways of being physically active after school. A wide range of Keep Well resources is available to help families get active together. School staff members are also encouraged to build physical activity into their day once school ends.
Notes for Editors
Active School Flag
Active School Flag (ASF) is an initiative of the Department of Education, supported by Healthy Ireland and administered through Mayo Education Centre. The aim of the programme is to get ‘More Schools. More Active. More Often’. ASF is awarded to schools that strive to achieve a physically educated and physically active school community.
Once awarded, ASF remains valid for a period of three years. Currently 678 primary schools, attended by 126, 380 pupils, hold ASF status, with many more working towards the flag at present. The ASF process for post-primary schools commenced in September 2021, with a phased roll-out. www.activeschoolflag.ie@ActiveFlag
Healthy Ireland is a major Government-led initiative which aims to create an Irish society where everyone can enjoy physical and mental health, and where wellbeing is valued and supported at every level of society. Under Healthy Ireland, the National Physical Activity Plan is led by the Departments of Health and of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, in partnership with a range of other key stakeholders including the Department of Education. Encouraging more schools to participate in the Active School Flag is a key objective of the Plan.
Healthy Ireland’s Let’s Get Set campaign contains lots of information for all ages on how to mind our own physical and mental health and wellbeing by adding healthy and helpful habits to our daily and weekly routines. More information can be found at the Healthy Ireland Let’s Get Set website at https://www.gov.ie/en/campaigns/8928d-healthy-ireland/
All of the #ASW22 resources, ideas and supports are accessible here: https://activeschoolflag.ie/asw22-active-school-week-2022/
#ASW22 Interactive Bizzy Breaks (Irish Heart Foundation)
Bizzy Breaks is a collection of activities for primary school pupils designed to support children to move throughout the day.
#ASW22 #Run Around Ireland
#ASW22 Cycling Ireland Challenge
#ASW22 Irish Primary PE Association
#ASW22 PDST PE