Gifted & Talented Policy



As a Partnership, we believe that Teaching and Learning in Physical Education should be child centred and holistic in approach therefore focussing on a range of abilities. The development of talented students is merely an extension of the work we do with all students on a day-to-day basis. By definition, the talented student will demonstrate higher levels of capacity in these ability areas.

We aim to provide the best possible provision for each of our talented students by adopting a clear identification process that recognises potential as well as current ability, offering work that extends them in a wide range of contexts, facilitating and tracking sporting pathways and offering appropriate levels of support throughout their academic life.

Standardised testing for talent can be prone to missing certain key elements of talented performance and consequently might overlook potential in the child. We feel that it is more appropriate to be subjective in nature in the early phases of identification, utilising professional knowledge and experience to support any 'gut' feeling. Objective testing certainly has a place within the provision of the talented athlete and should form part of his or her monitoring and tracking of progress.

The eventual outcomes of any intervention could include; lifelong participation, a rewarding PE experience, elite sport performance and sports leadership.


  • To recognise potential as well as existing talent and nurture these side by side.
    • To develop talent support out of a holistic programme which focuses on a multidimensional approach.
    • To provide and individually tailored talent development programme.
    • To stimulate lifelong participation in physical activity at students' chosen level of participation.

Definition of Talented Students

We must endeavour to maximise capacity across a full multi ability profile. Within this there are key traits of a talented performance that can be recognised and used not only to support with initial identification but also as part of the later tracking and provision process. These are factors that cannot necessarily be quantified but we frequently recognise subconsciously when working with talented students.


    • Interpersonal ability or the ability to interact with others. Being able to bring out the best of those around them.
    • Specific physical skills associated with a high level of performance and autonomy. Fundamental movement skills are a major predictor of talent potential in this area.
    • Key Areas to a Multi Ability profile
    • Talented students in Physical Education will demonstrate ability over and above that of their peers. Physical performance will feature strongly and high National Curriculum levels of attainment may well back this up. Other non-physical attributes however must also be considered to fully support the provision of the talented student.
    • Readily accepting fault in order to diffuse conflict and quickly resume play
    • Happy to join other groups irrespective of peers and others' ability
    • Repeats instructions for others to help them understand and achieve.
    • Support of partner and teammates to enable to be the best they can be.
    • Tends to take a supportive leading role with good communication and encouragement.


    • Ability to regulate their own learning, set themselves goals and practice hard in their own context. A well motivated pupil of average ability may have greater potential than a de-motivated one of higher physical ability.
    • Can always be left to continue to practise given drills unsupervised.
    • May well talk about training outside of school or ask for advice of things they can do to improve on their own.
    • Strength of character to continue and adapt when challenged by difficulty or potential failure. E.g. A fall in gymnastics.
    • Able to visualise performance as part of mental rehearsalCognitive:
    • Ability to transfer skills, concepts and applications between activities. Show high awareness and decision-making skills.
    • Thinks beyond their next immediate action
    • Aware of more than just what the ball is doing, but also space, teammates and opponents.
    • Considers the wider picture, e.g. tactics
    • Able to evaluate performance effectively and perceive ways to improve.


    • Complete tasks in a novel way, offer alternative responses to certain stimuli, have a broad analysis vocabulary and innovative tactics and skills. Flair and ability to outwit opponents or enhance performance.
    • May utilise skills and knowledge in other settings, perhaps adapted to improve performance, e.g. fake pass learned in basketball becomes a dummy in football
    • Quickly adapts responses or performance when unexpected occursIdentificationThe nature of Identification is such that professional knowledge and experience enables the recognition of talent. Commonly this would be during regular monitoring and assessment of pupils' performance. It should also be recognised however, particularly with regard to spotting potential talent that identification may be instinctive on the part of the professional and more subjective in nature.

Basic Criteria.

Primary Identification
Throughout pupils' Primary education, it is expected that the person responsible for Primary G&T provision will work with the SSCo to support the identification of talent and potential talent. SSCos may run standardisation days to support this process. It is acknowledged that primary staff have a much broader knowledge of the whole child and their background and are therefore more likely to be able to pass on information particularly relating to activities which do not commonly appear on school PE curricular.

    • This focuses on the five abilities outlined above, and various high order Fundamental Movement activities used to allow students to demonstrate their proficiency in ability areas.
    • It is important to remember that potentially talented students may be under achieving or failing to reach their potential as a result of certain issues or circumstances that prevent their talent from showing. No student will be denied the opportunity to access talent support if at any point they are considered a potentially talented performer.

Secondary Identification

    • Whilst it is hoped that most talented students will have been identified by this stage there will be a few that emerge (perhaps late developers), not to mention those students that come from out of County into our system. To this end, it is essential that Secondary staff are also aware of the strategies and criteria used in talent identification. As before, should a member of staff suspect that a pupil has potential then he or she should be given appropriate opportunity to develop.By the same token, some students will not develop as expected and may have to be removed from the P.E. talented register. This should be done following full discussion by department staff to ensure awareness and standardisation within the process.This should be kept within the PE department and regularly reviewed and updated. A copy will also be kept by the Partnership to maintain a database of talent activity and provision across all schools. Naturally to conform to data protection guidelines, no contact details of students should appear on this list.National Governing Bodies will also have their own ongoing talent development lists through local ID sessions and development squads that are created. The Partnership will liaise with NGBs as appropriate to ensure equivalence of information. Where names do not appear on schools' lists then the Head of Department will be informed to review the situation and take suitable action. Where the school have identified a potential talent that has not been recognised by the appropriate Governing Body then the student will be directed to necessary talent ID sessions whilst the NGB is made aware of this untapped potential.
    • Provision
  • NGB Collaboration
    • Talent register.
    • Any provision strategies for students should relate directly to the abilities that have been identified.
    • Standardisation opportunities and assessment of provision should occur frequently.
    • Future provision should be informed by evaluation of current strategies.
    • Students should be involved at every opportunity to discuss their involvement in the talent development programme.Provision needs to considered in key areas:
    • Opportunities given to work with and experience work normally given to pupils older than themselves.
    • Students should experience challenge alongside pupils of similar standards where appropriate in order to stretch them more effectively.
    • Differentiation is central focus of provision for talented students.
    • Where possible students should be encouraged to review their own progress and elaborate on demands placed upon them as a result of their talent and activities
    • Mentors, (particularly in later Key Stages) should be available to support individuals and groups of students in maintaining the work/sport/life balance.
  • Extension, Enrichment and Enabling activities
    • Opportunities are offered to allow students to enrich their experiences as well as extend their performance.
    • Information is provided for all pupils through a dedicated display board.
    • Students should be made aware of and directed towards local, regional and national opportunities for participation.
    • Through Partnership organisation cluster activities are organised at a central location.
    • Communication between PE department and NGBs is maintained to remain aware of developments concerning talented individuals.Continual Professional Development
    • Staff require ongoing support from the Partnership in terms of Talent ID and Selection.
    • Teaching and support strategies need to be regularly reviewed and updated.
    • There needs to be regular consultation and ownership by staff within the department regarding quality standards of the identification and provision process

Partners and Sponsors

Partners and Sponsors

  • Sport England
    Active Partnerships
    Somerset Business Award Winner
    Somerset Chamber of Commerce
    Disability Confident
  • Somerset Skills & Learning
    Youth Sport Trust
    activity alliance
    Somerset Partnership
    Somerset County Council
    Avon & Somerset Police
  • Homes in Sedgemoor
    Macmillan Cancer Support
    Community Council for Somerset
    Spark Somerset
    YMCA Dulverton Group
    Department for Work & Pensions
  • EDF
    together team
    Somerset Cricket Board
    British American Football Association
    Badminton England
  • Somerset FA
    British Cycling
    Create Development
    Children in Need
    The Salvation Army
  • Channel Adventure
    Nova Sports & Coaching
    Somerset Community Foundation
    Sports Coach UK