A WEYMOUTH school is taking the lead in boosting the health of young people so they can reach for the top.

Budmouth College has been accredited as a Health and Wellbeing School, one of a selected few around the country recognised for a commitment to raising achievement through PE and sport.

As a ‘lead school’ it has the honour of being the county hub of expertise encouraging pupils to lead healthy lifestyles, acting as a training centre for guidance and support.

It will be mainly working with primary schools but will also be available to share good practice with secondary schools.

As well as aiding the development of high-quality PE and sport, it will help schools develop extra-curricular education and provide students with the opportunity to take part in sports festivals.

The accreditation comes from the Youth Sport Trust (YST) backed by the Department of Health.

Head of sport at Budmouth Phil Morley said: “It is widely recognised that healthy, active students make effective learners.

“The YST, in partnership with the Department of Health, have invested £150million over the next two years to improve the quality of sports and PE provision around the country.

“We hope this will significantly improve achievement at the college and also help to raise the achievement of those schools we work in partnership with.”

Budmouth already runs a Primary Leadership Academy and many other YST schemes, including Bikeability, Change4Life, Fit for Girls and Young Ambassadors.

The sports department is also working in collaboration with other subjects – including the languages department teaching a module of handball to encourage the development of spoken German.

Year 12 student Charlie Squibb, studying for a BTEC National Diploma in Sport and Sports Leadership, said: “There is a good range of leadership opportunities at Budmouth and we have had the opportunity to work with a variety of children.

“These opportunities help me to develop my communication and build my self-esteem and confidence.”

Budmouth’s Health and Wellbeing coordinator Jo Ray said: “I am looking forward to working alongside colleagues in order to improve the whole college’s health and wellbeing ethos through the medium of physical activity.”

Schools that would like to work with Budmouth can contact Jo Ray or Phil Morley via email at rayj@budmouth.dorset.sch.uk or morleyp@budmouth.dorset.sch.uk.