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Sport At Rishworth

  • Sport At Rishworth
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The PE Department is a thriving and successful department that not only excels in a wide range of sports but also caters for the demands of all standards of ability. The intention is to maintain and stimulate pupil interest and enjoyment in sports and to promote health and fitness for current and future lifestyles. It is also a major aim to develop a range of desirable personal qualities such as humility, perseverance, politeness, initiative and independence via the establishment of pupil self-esteem through the development of physical confidence.

The Sports Curriculum

Students entering Year 7 are taught more than ten different sports as part of the Key Stage 3 Curriculum and in most of these sports they are given the opportunity to attend extra-curricular coaching sessions as well as competing in fixtures against other schools from across the North of England. The Department follows guidelines as laid out in the National Curriculum with students taking part in both mixed and single-sex lessons following a four year progressive modular programme. Four full time PE teachers are responsible for the delivery of the curriculum.In addition to this outside coaching specialists are used in activities such as badminton, basketball, climbing, rugby and sailing.

Competitive Sport

In addition to the curriculum-taught sports and the extra curricular activities coaching programme, the PE Department runs an extremely comprehensive and challenging competitive fixture programme with well over 400 fixtures per year. All teams play on a friendly, traditional fixture list as well as competing in National Championships and the Calderdale Schools’ league.


Fixtures take place on Saturday mornings and in the afternoon following lessons during the week. Both individually, and collectively our successes are many and varied.

“As I progressed through junior representative teams, Rishworth School always supported me with my athletic development and the demands of academic studies. This allowed me to complete my A-Level studies whilst training on a near full time basis with Leicester Tigers.” (George Ford, Leicester and England Rugby)

Extra Curricular Coaching

Coaching sessions take place at lunchtime and after school. At junior level all school team players have two training sessions a week as well as their Games lesson. This allows students the chance to progress their learning at an accelerated rate and gives teams the opportunity to work on unit and team skills. Sessions are run by PE and coaching specialists.

Sport Scholarship Programme

Sport Scholarships are available to students on entry into Year 7 and the Sixth Form. Scholarships are awarded on merit and represent a real accolade to successful candidates, who must not only demonstrate a high level of ability but also future potential. Scholarships are awarded on the understanding that a pupil will fully involve themselves in the sporting life of the school. For further information please contact Mr Andrew Thomas, Director of Sport.

Talented Athlete Development Programme

The Department runs this programme for the school’s most talented athletes across a range of sports. The aim is to give these students a high level of technical information which they can then incorporate into their own personal training and development plans. The programme operates on a modular basis and covers specialist topics that all performers, irrespective of sport can benefit from. Modules include: speed development, strength and conditioning, diet and re-hydration, sports psychology and performance analysis. The modules are devised and underwritten by specialist professionals and delivered by PE staff and experts in each field.


A wide range of extracurricular sports and activities is offered throughout the year during lunch break, after School hours and in the evening. These activities are very varied and include athletics, badminton, basketball, cricket, football, hockey, netball, rounders, rugby, swimming and tennis.

Competitive Sport

In addition to the curriculum taught sports and the extracurricular activities coaching programme, the PE Department runs an extremely comprehensive and challenging competitive fixture programme. During the academic year 2015-2016 we competed in well over 400 fixtures. All teams play on a friendly traditional fixture list as well as competing in National Championships and the Calderdale Schools’ competitions. Both individually and collectively our successes are many and varied as demonstrated by the résumé for the year 2015-2016.

Touring Abroad

Senior students in the school take part in a major overseas tour every three years. This gives them the chance to test their sporting ability as well as have a unique opportunity of sampling the life of many diverse cultures.


In 1996 the rugby team toured South Africa, in 1997 the girls toured Ireland, in 1998 thirty four boys toured the Southern Hemisphere and 2000 saw a three-week visit to Canada. 2001 saw both hockey and netball teams travel to Barbados and in the summer of 2002 the boys toured Singapore, Malaysia and Australia. In 2004 we visited South Africa on our first overseas combined tour winning all but one of 16 hockey and rugby matches. In 2006 over 80 students toured South America playing in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. 2008 saw four teams going to Australia where they played 20 games and lost only 3. In 2010 the School hosted a touring hockey team from Chile, whilst in 2012 a hockey, netball and rugby tour to Sri Lanka proved hugely successful. A hugely successful tour to Canada and the USA took place in July 2015 and in 2016 the school hosted a Canadian Rugby team. A tour to South Africa is planned for July 2018.

Representative Honours, Past and Present

In the last decade a considerable number of Rishworth students have achieved county honours in their chosen sport. A number of these have gone one step further and received international recognition in their respective age range and some have gone still further as professional players and senior internationals. Examples include: Helen Searle, an England U20 golfer and WPGA Tour player; George Ford, Bath, Leicester & England RUFC player; Gareth Widdop, St George Illawarra & England RL international; Emyr Huwes, Manchester City & Wales international footballer; Josie Rixon, England U21’s hockey squad member.

Achievement and Representative Honours 2015/2016

Former Students



Sadie Greetham continues to duel with the best in Europe and is training hard for the 2020 Olympics.



Isaac Baldwin has now progressed to the professional club Halifax Town FC.


Scott Moloney has signed professional forms with Hartlepool United FC.


Rugby League

Gareth Widdop of St George, Illawarra Dragons is the current International Rugby League stand off for England.


Richard Hunwicks: Head of Human Performance, England Rugby League.


Rugby Union

George Ford of Bath RUFC played in the Rugby Union Six Nations for England and in the Rugby World Cup.


Phil Nielsen: is in his 10 year testimonial year at Yorkshire Carnegie RUFC.

Current Students

Below is a selection of examples of what some of our current pupils are doing within Sport. The scale of representation is very high and this list reflects a taste of what the pupils have achieved.



Pupils have played for the U11 Yorkshire County Cricket Team and one was awarded the club bowling prize in 2015. Other pupils have been selected to represent West Yorkshire at U13, the U12 Taverners Team and the U17 Taverners Team. The latter captained the side.  



A pupil  qualified for the U25’s British Dressage Championships at the age of 15.



A pupil has signed for Accrington Stanley.



A pupil has performed at the Great Britain Eurogym event.



A number of pupils are regularly selected for the West Yorkshire Hockey teams and attend the Junior Regional Performance Centre. On the school team front the Under 12 & 16 squads were all crowned Calderdale Indoor Hockey champions with the U13, 14 & 18 squads repeating the achievement in the outdoor competitions.



Pupils have been selected for the West Yorkshire U16 Academy, the Greater Manchester Academy and the U19 Yorkshire Jets squad alongside regular selection for Calderdale. Our squads compete strongly in local tournaments and have been crowned as winners and have a consistent track record as winners.


Rugby Union

Pupils are selected to play at county level for both Lancashire and Yorkshire. One pupil has recently been selected to the U18 Sale Sharks Elite Player Group at the age of 16. Other pupils have been selected for the U15 Sale Sharks Development Player’s Programme and the Leeds Carnegie Development Programme. Pupils have also been attending the Yorkshire U16 and U13 Carnegie ERDPP. One pupil is in his third season representing West Yorkshire.



A pupil has been selected for the North East Division at the English School National Swimming Championships as well as the ASA National County Team Championships. Others have qualified for the North East Regional Championships.



A pupil continues to compete and win at a very high level, including nationally against Ireland, Wales and Scotland, in a variety of events such as Synchronized Trampoline, Double Mini Trampete and the Trampoline. She competes at U17 level which a fantastic achievement for a 13 year old.



One of our younger pupils continues to participate in Biathlon and Triathlon events and is having great success coming 6th in the British U12’s Biathlon and 1st in the U13 Yorkshire Pentathlon Championships. She has recently qualified for the U12 National Triathlon Championships.