High School's elite sports programme

Ipswich High School have launched an exciting new Elite Sportswomen Programme in a bid to nurture their most promising young athletes through their important early development years.

By STUART WATSON

stuart.watson@archant.co.uk

Ipswich High School have launched an exciting new Elite Sportswomen Programme in a bid to nurture their most promising young athletes through their important early development years.

Beginning at the start of the new school year in September, the programme aims to give an official support structure to the school's very best sportswomen in their bid to make it to the top.


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Those selected for the programme will be have weekly meetings with PE staff to help them work out the fine balance with training and school life.

IHS headmistress Elaine Purves said: “We spent a lot of time mulling over whether we wanted to call it an 'elite' programme, but at Ipswich High School we are not scared of being very good and so we decided to embrace it.

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“Although we have used the word elite the programme itself will in no way be elitist. We want it to inspire girls at all levels to enjoy and improve their sport whether they be the more reluctant or the most motivated.”

Girls of all ages at the school will be able to apply for the programme by submitting their sporting CV between now and the start of the new school year.

There are no plans to limit the number of places, with successful applicants split between two levels - Excellence and Elite.

Level One (Excellence) is open to students who have played at county level or above, while Level Two (Elite) is open to students who have reached national level within their sports and are identified as potential future champions.

IHS's director of sport Kirsty Evans said: “We wanted to build greater lines of communication between the different channels of influence surrounding these girls so that their coaches, parents and teachers can help them juggle the different demands being put on them.

“State schools tend to have a very good system put in place for them when it comes to links with clubs. We miss out on that loop a little bit and have to work a little bit harder to make sure our girls are getting fed into the right channels outside of school.”

At the Elite level of the programme, the school will also help students find sponsorship and financial support from outside sources.

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