Premier League support for schools is a real game changer!

Posted on: Monday, September 25, 2023

Several primary schools in Newark and Sherwood will be getting the ‘Premier League’ treatment over the next two years as Nottingham Forest Community Trust launches their Primary Stars programme across the district.

Supported by Newark and Sherwood District Council through funding from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, the project uses the appeal of the Premier League and professional football clubs to inspire children to develop key skills and live healthier lifestyles through participation in physical education, enhanced learning opportunities and social action initiatives!

Thanks to the funding, Nottingham Forest Community Trust have been able to launch their programme within the district for two academic years starting from September 2023, with coaches recently recruited by the Trust to deliver the programme in several local schools.

Through the proven programme, the Trust can empower more young people to adopt healthier lifestyles whilst improving educational outcomes through combining physical education with academic learning opportunities. The programme will include digital resources, weekly face to face delivery days in each participating school and on occasions, visits from Premier League players too!

Councillor Matthew Spoors, Portfolio Holder for Sustainable Economic Development at Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: “This is a great initiative that supports young people to develop skills that they will need later in life and will help those students that may be struggling in the classroom with targeted student interventions.

“This can also encourage students to engage in active lifestyles and develop a passion for sports with the involvement of a Premier League football team where young people have a chance to meet their heroes.

“I’m proud to know that Newark and Sherwood District Council has been able to bring this project to life thanks to our support though the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.”

Jordan Ferrer, PLPS Head Coach at Nottingham Forest Community Trust, said: "Nottingham Forest Community Trust are delighted to start a new partnership with Newark and Sherwood District Council. The partnership has opened up many different avenues in that area of Nottinghamshire, helping us with our overall commitment to support those that need us."

"We are very much looking forward to working with the schools selected, supporting pupils through PE delivery, intervention work and extra-curricular opportunities, enhancing the lives of the local community."

Jenny Hodgkinson, Headteacher at Lovers Lane Primary School in Newark, said: "The Lovers’ Lane Primary School community are delighted to be working in partnership with Nottingham Forest Football Club and Newark and Sherwood District Council.

“The programme on offer is fantastic for our children and we are excited to receive support in lessons, additional learning opportunities and extra-curricular activities at school as well as visits to learn at the City Ground. We are really impressed by all that is on offer from a well-qualified and eager football team.

“This fantastic link to our local Premier League Football club, supported by many in the community, is so exciting. Thank you, Nottingham Forest, we can’t wait to get started!”

Jodi Ince, Head of School at Blidworth Oaks Primary School, said:We are so excited to begin our journey with the Nottingham Forest Community team. They have been excellent sharing the benefits of the programme with us and showing great flexibility with working within our timetable and approaches to learning.

“The range of different elements on offer through project; from PE teaching, mentoring and academic interventions and extremely impressive and we cannot wait to get started!”

As well as support in the classroom, the project also organises tournaments, sports days, competitions and PE sessions for all year groups as well as standalone workshops with a focus on themes such as mental health, internet safety and environmental sustainability.

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is providing £2.6 billion of new funding that local authorities were able to bid for and invest in their districts and boroughs by March 2025.

In December 2022, it was announced the District Council had successfully secured £3.29m to allocate to eligible local organisations. More information can be found on the Newark and Sherwood District Council website: