Supporting school improvement through play

An independent evaluation of the innovative Outdoor Play and Learning (OPAL) programme, designed to enhance play opportunities for children within school.

The report found the scheme dramatically shifted schools’ attitudes to play, much to the benefit of pupils who returned to the classroom ‘ready to learn’.

The OPAL programme, piloted in over sixty schools in South Gloucestershire, Bristol, Wiltshire and North Somerset, introduced a variety of changes including:

– Providing training and mentoring for teaching staff and lunchtime supervisors
– Giving children a licence to play in all weathers
– Redesigning outdoor spaces to enhance their ‘playability’
– Introducing a range of play materials that children could use imaginatively
– Embedding play into other areas of school practice.

Download Supporting school improvement through play  [527KB PDF]