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School Games Mark

The School Games Mark is a government led awards scheme  to reward schools for their commitment to the development of competition across their school and into the community.

What is the School Games?


The School Games comprises of both Intra and Inter-school competitions leading to County Finals as well as a biennial National Finals event.


What is the mission?

Keeping competitive sport at the heart of schools and providing more young people with the opportunity to compete and achieve their personal best.


What is the vision?


By 2020 the School Games will be continuing to make a clear and meaningful difference to the lives of even more children and young people.


How does it work?


The School Games events consist of four unique types of competition: intra-school competitions, local inter-school competitions, county finals, and the School Games National Finals.

School Games Glossary of terms


My Personal Best

It is the mission of the School Games to provide ‘more young people with the opportunity to compete and achieve their Personal Best’; this includes when competing against yourself and others, with a view of improving personal performances and reaching individual goals. The opportunity to improve one’s personal best should be accessible for all students in school and designed to engage as many participants as possible.


Intra School Competition

An Intra-School competition is a sporting activity that takes place between pupils who attend the same school. For example, this can be in the form of an inter-class or house activity.


Inter School Competition

A local Inter-School competition is a sporting activity that takes place between schools from the same area – either as a one-off fixture or as part of a league. These competitions may act as qualifiers for County Final (Level 3) or can be run as developmental competitions or festival events to meet the needs of a local area.


Pathway Competitions

These are inter school competitions where the winners feed into the County Final. These competitions must adhere to the NGB Priority formats, and the target audience should be defined by the LOC to ensure that when participants reach the County Final they are competing against those of a similar experience/ability.


Development Competitions

These are inter-school competitions where there is no pathway to the County Final. The purpose of these inter-school events can be established locally with the key philosophy being there is a clear and mutually agreed reason for the sport/activities inclusion in an SGOs calendar of competition and it is supporting the engagement of different Young People such as those not previously engaged in competition. NGB formats should be adhered to and consideration should be given to the delivery approach/environment e.g. round-robin, ladder or knock-out.



These are an inter-school occasion aimed at year 3 and 4 pupils which includes a rotation of skill based activities which challenge young people to achieve their personal best e.g. jumping, throwing, catching, skipping, racket skills, combat, adventure, target themed. This is not an NGB Format festival.


School Games Sports Formats

National Governing Bodies of Sport (NGBs) have utilised the School Games to build and develop a series of sport formats for intra and inter-school competition. These formats aim to encourage all young people to participate and are based on supporting young people to build and extend their skills and confidence.


School Games Day

A Games Day is more than just an annual sports day. It should encompass culture, celebration, inclusion and is a culmination of a year-round programme of regular intra-school competition.