Physical Education And Sport At School In Europe. Eurydice Report.

Por: European Commission e Eurydice.

European Comission. 2013

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During childhood and youth, physical education at school provides an excellent opportunity to learn and practise skills likely to enhance lifelong fitness and good health. These activities may include daily running, swimming, cycling and climbing, as well as more structured games and sports. Early mastery of the basic skills crucially helps young people to perform and understand the value of these activities better in their later education, or as adults at work or during leisure time.

However physical education is not limited to training in physical skills, and has more than just a recreational dimension. With involvement in many physical activities come knowledge and insight centred on principles and concepts such as ‘rules of the game’, fair play and respect, tactical and bodily awareness, and the social awareness linked to personal interaction and team effort in many sports. Goals that extend beyond physical education and sport – such as good health, sound personal development, and social inclusion – give further weight to the importance of including this subject in the school curriculum. The societal value of physical education and sport has also been expressed in various documents by the European Commission.

In its White Paper on Sport (European Commission, 2007a), the Commission pointed out that time spent in sports, whether in school physical education lessons or extracurricular activities, could result in substantial education and health benefits.

The EU Guidelines on 'Health Enhancing Physical Activity' (EU Working Group 'Sport & Health', 2008) asked for attention to be paid specifically to the physical and mental health problems caused by declining physical activity among young people and the concomitant increase in sedentary lifestyles and obesity. The Guidelines estimated that up to 80 % of school-age children engage in physical activity solely at school, and that they should have at least one hour of light physical activity every day. Sufficient time devoted to sport and physical activity at school, either in the formal curriculum or on an extracurricular basis, can make a key contribution to healthier lifestyles.

The European Commission long lacked any legal basis for further investigation in this area, as the EU Member States alone were responsible for implementing measures concerned with physical education and sports at school. Neither were these activities recognised as a key competence for lifelong learning in the European Reference Framework (European Commission, 2007b). As a result, policy statements such as the foregoing White Paper and EU Guidelines had no legal or regulatory underpinning. And there was no up-to-date overview of how Member States defined the role of physical education and physical activities, or of how their own policies in this area related to recent developments in the fields of health, education and sport.

Article 165 of the 2009 EU Lisbon Treaty (1) has slightly changed this situation, as it gives the European Union a legal basis for a new competence on sport which calls for action to develop the European dimension in sport. The Treaty also entitles the European Union to 'contribute to the promotion of European sporting issues' and recognises the social and educational function of sport. With this broader remit, the European Commission Communication on Sport (European Commission, 2011) articulated the concern of several EU Member States about the quality of physical education programmes and the qualifications of the teachers involved in them.

The present Eurydice report may thus be fairly regarded as the first attempt by the Commission to identify these concerns in greater detail and map out the state of play in physical education and sports activities at school in Europe. Its findings may well lead to the inclusion of more concrete action and measures in this field under the future EU Work Plan for Sport and the Erasmus for All programme.


título página
Capa 1
Introduction 7
Executive Summary 11
Chapter 1: National Strategies And Large-scale Initiatives 13
Chapter 2: Curricular Content 17
Chapter 3: Recommended Taught Time 25
Chapter 4: Pupil Assessment 31
Chapter 5: Teachers 35
Chapter 6: Extracurricular Physical Activities And Sports 41
Chapter 7: Planned Reforms 47
Glossary, Statistical Databases And References 51
Annex 1: National Strategies And Main Large-scale Initiatives, 2011/12 55
Annex 2: Recommended Taught Time 66
Acknowledgements 69
Eurydice National Units 70




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