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Physical Education

PE at St James' develops students’ competence and confidence to take part in a range of physical activities that become a central part of their lives, both in and out of school.

Our high-quality PE curriculum enables all pupils to enjoy and succeed in many kinds of physical activity. They develop a wide range of skills and the ability to use tactics, strategies and compositional ideas to perform successfully. When they are performing, they think about what they are doing, analyse the situation and make decisions. They also reflect on their own and others’ performances and find ways to improve them. As a result, they develop the confidence to take part in different physical activities and learn about the value of healthy, active lifestyles. Discovering what they like to do, what their aptitudes are at school, and how and where to get involved in physical activity helps them make informed choices about lifelong physical activity.

PE helps students to develop personally and socially. They work as individuals, in groups and in teams, developing concepts of fairness and of personal and social responsibility. They take on different roles and responsibilities, including leadership, coaching and officiating. Through the range of experiences that PE offers, they learn how to be effective in competitive, creative and challenging situations.

Students not opting for PE at Keys Stages 4 and 5 will still have the opportunity to take part in PE activities during their core lessons.

Key Stage 3

For details of PE at Key Stage 3, please click here

For details of PE kit requirements, click here

Examination PE

Year 10 GCSE

For current Year 10 students, and all future cohorts, the PE department has moved to the AQA exam board. AQA state they have ‘worked closely with teachers and the Youth Sport Trust to develop a new specification with topics that will help all students to develop a well-rounded skill set and progress to further studies.

The activity list and the practical weighting will be the same across all exam boards, but we’ve worked hard to ensure that our new specification is engaging and our assessment clearer.’

With this in mind the department made the decision to move to AQA and we firmly believe it is an exciting time to study Physical Education at St James’

For further information visit



Year 11 GCSE

Our current Year 11’s will be the last cohort to study the Edexcel specification and will no doubt benefit from the vast experience the department has in delivering it.

The course builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills established in Key Stage 3 Physical Education. It gives exciting opportunities to be involved in a number of different physical activities, promoting an active and healthy lifestyle. Students are able to perform in one or all of the following roles: player/participant, leader or official. Furthermore, they develop understanding on how the body reacts to sport.

As well as being the ideal preparation for the A Level Physical Education course, GCSE Physical Education allows for progression to related vocational qualifications, such as BTEC Firsts and Nationals in Sport or Sport and Exercise Sciences. The course develops the transferable skills and key skills that employers are looking for and can lead to a wide variety of employment opportunities. This can include further training in areas such as recreational management, leisure activities, coaching, officiating, the fitness industry, the armed forces and the Civil Service.

To find out more information on the Edexcel GCSE course visit



Year 12 A-Level

This new A-Level qualification is linear. Linear means that students will sit all their public exams and submit all their non-exam assessment at the end of the course in Year 13. Again the department has taken this opportunity to move to the AQA specification as we believe this offers the most exciting and challenging content.

Students will study the following areas in depth throughout the two year course;

Factors affecting participation in physical activity and sport

Factors affecting optimal performance in physical activity and sport

These two headings cover a wide range of topics including;

1. Applied anatomy and physiology

2. Skill acquisition

3. Sport and society

4. Exercise physiology

5. Biomechanical movement

6. Sport psychology

7. Sport and society and the role of technology in physical activity and sport

The department feels this course offers real depth of understanding across a very diverse range of topics.

Additional information can be found at



Year 13 A2

The Edexcel A level Physical Education specification, takes a refreshing and innovative approach to the study of PE and sport at an advanced level. It ‘seeks to develop students' knowledge, understanding, skills and application in physical education and sport’. The capacity for students to choose the roles they prefer makes this a thoroughly accessible specification for all abilities.

The specification:

  • Draws on well-established areas of study but also takes account of the contemporary view of PE and sport. As well as retaining familiar and successful aspects of the previous specification, there are many innovative features, such as the options to perform as player, leader or official, in chosen sports.
  • Reflects ongoing dynamic developments in PE and sport. This has been achieved by allowing the students to research and study sport at the local, national and international arena.
  • Places the student at the centre. Students are encouraged to review their current participation and performance in sport, to identify opportunities locally and nationally for them to advance this participation and performance and ultimately to create a life plan linked to sport participation and health.

The link below provides further insight into the course.




Click here for the current schedule of activities


For the most up to date sporting fixtures and results, click here to access the PE Department's twitter account