The Deliverers Debate

Authored by: Richard Blair

Routledge Handbook of Primary Physical Education

Print publication date:  November  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138682344
eBook ISBN: 9781315545257
Adobe ISBN:


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The purpose of this chapter is to discuss the relatively new yet emerging issue of who should be teaching children physical education and school sport in primary schools. Traditionally in most western school systems, including countries such as England, the United States, Australia and Canada, physical education curriculums and programmes of study have been designed, developed, taught and evaluated by qualified teachers (Kirk, 2010). In primary schools this has been the generalist class teacher, professional educators who have not necessarily specialised in physical education (Blair & Capel, 2011; Sloan, 2010). However, in recent years research has shown that physical education in primary schools has also been taught by people other than the class teacher (Stewart, 2006; Blair & Capel, 2008, 2011; Griggs, 2008, 2010; Powell, 2015; Sloan, 2010; Williams, Hay & Macdonald, 2011; Williams & Macdonald, 2015), typically non-professionals who have coaching qualifications from national governing bodies (NGBs) and specialise in aspects of youth sport (Blair & Capel, 2008; Griggs, 2010). Extra-curricular school sport has again traditionally been delivered by qualified teachers in some countries – for example, England – but in others such as America coaches have been used to support and deliver extra-curricular sports teams.

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