Scotland politics

'No outdoor sport' at over 1,000 Scottish schools

Runners on track Image copyright Thinkstock

More than 1,000 schools have no outdoor sports facilities, according to Scottish Labour.

It claimed the figures provided to it by SportScotland show not enough is being invested by the Scottish government.

A total of 1,040 schools were recorded as having no outdoor facilities.

The Scottish government said £168m has been channelled through SportScotland since 2007 to support councils and sports groups.

The schools without outdoor facilities included four in ten primary schools and three-quarters of schools for those with additional support needs.

Labour education spokesman Daniel Johnson said: "Having access to outdoor sports facilities isn't just about finding the next Andy Murray, it's about cutting the attainment gap with healthier children more likely to do well in the classroom.

"We also know that Scotland has made almost no progress in tackling childhood obesity in the last ten years. Access to outdoor sports facilities should be part of the solution.

"These figures show that the SNP government hasn't been giving our schools the investment they need to deliver investment in the estate. The SNP should reverse the ten years of cuts it has made to Scotland's schools."

'Healthier lives'

The Scottish government has defended its record on encouraging sports provision.

Sports minister Aileen Campbell said: "We are investing in a range of areas to support healthier lives for children and families, including investing £149m in free school meals for all primary 1 to 3 children, a total of £11.6m in supporting schools to meet our PE manifesto commitments between 2012 - 2016 and £50m for Active Schools.

She added: "Since 2007, SportScotland has invested £168m to support councils, sports governing bodies and other organisations delivering a wide range of new and upgraded sports facilities.

"We have now exceeded our target of delivering 150 Community Sport Hubs across all local authorities by 2016, with 50% based in schools. To date, a total of 157 Community Sport Hubs are in place.

"SportScotland has also announced a further £6m investment to create a total of 200 Hubs by 2020."

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