Inside Lines: No U-turn on school sports cash but Gove is set to make a left

There's a hell of a punch-up still going on in the playground since that school bully Michael Gove took the ball away and won't let the other kids play with it. At least that's what many teachers are claiming. They are also suggesting there will be no legacy left for the class of 2012 when the Olympics are over, and that we will end up in the next decade with a generation of Billy Bunters rather than Tom Daleys.

Why has the education secretary put the boot into the schools sports programme? That's the £162 million question. Actually, the funding has not been cut, just "de-ring-fenced" to allow head teachers to decide for themselves how the money should be allocated; whether to continue to use it to bring in sports coaches and improve sports facilities or channel it elsewhere. The outcry has been boosted by a well-orchestrated campaign, in which some 80 Olympians including Denise Lewis have joined thousands of hot-under-the-mortarboard teachers and schoolkids in petitioning a Prime Minister already up to his neck in revolting students. Lewis calls it "a crying shame" and now the boxer James DeGale has joined the fight, saying the decision is "baffling".

The Government's action, we are told, is not simply to save money but because they believe there is insufficient competitive sport in schools. So to this end they are introducing a "Schools Olympics" which will supplant the present UK School Games. And there's the rub. The UK School Games were the baby of the last administration and have been run by the Youth Sports Trust, the big losers in all of this as their raison d'être is challenged. For effectively what Gove is doing is emasculating the YST. A casualty will be their Schools Sports Partnership programme, which employs several thousand coaches and games organisers across 450 schools. But not if Baroness Sue Campbell has her way. She chairs both the YST and UK Sport, and while she sits as a cross-bencher in the House of Lords, she is known to have Labour sympathies. Which is where the issue becomes intensely political, for Tory peer Lord Moynihan, who backs the new move, also wants the British Olympic Association, which he chairs, to be the major player in running the "Schools Olympics" rather than the YST. So what will be the upshot of Gove's armageddon? David Cameron is due to visit the Olympic Park on 20 December and by then is likely to have leaned on Gove to broker a compromise by restoring part of the ring-fenced budget. But it won't be a complete U-turn. More a veer to the left. Bully for him.



Binman the better

David Haye, now set to fight Wladimir Klitschko after the Ukrainian's bout with Dereck Chisora was conveniently called off, first has a date with the Boxing Board to explain claims that he bet on himself to beat Audley Harrison in three rounds. Just as well he didn't wager on being voted Britain's Boxer of the Year. He was pipped, surprisingly, by the binman Rendell Munroe.



Boot campers wanted

Here's a chance to be part of the action in 2012. GB Hockey are throwing open the chance to be a "ball patrol person" – PC sports-speak for ballboy or girl – at the London Games. A hundred hopefuls aged between 18 and 25, chosen by ballot, will attend a ball patrol boot camp and be whittled down to a final 36. Hurry, the deadline is tomorrow noon. Go to greatbritainhockey.co.uk.



Falling through the ice

UK Sport have bucked the current cutbacks mode by increasing the funding for six Olympic sports. Taekwondo (whose success we highlighted last week), boxing, canoeing, gymnastics, rowing and hockey will share a surprise £2.6m Christmas box. But there is cold comfort for a number of underachieving winter sports, notably figure skating, whose modest £100,000 a year goes into deep freeze. Torvill and Dean must be turning on their double axels. With successors John and Sinead Kerr out because of injury, the recent British championships saw only one couple finish in the ice dancing final. Get your skates on, Ann Widdecombe.



insidelines@independent.co.uk

News
A model of a Neanderthal man on display at the National Museum of Prehistory in Dordogne, France
science
News
Richard Dawkins dedicated his book 'The Greatest Show on Earth' to Josh Timonen
newsThat's Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome
Arts and Entertainment
Eye of the beholder? 'Concrete lasagne' Preston bus station
architectureWhich monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Extras
indybest
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

C# .NET Software Developer (Client-Side, SQL, VB6, WinForms)

Negotiable: Harrington Starr: C# .NET Software Developer (Client-Side, SQL, VB...

C# Developer (Genetic Algorithms, .NET 4.5, TDD, SQL, AI)

£40000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...

C# Full Stack Developer (.NET 4.0, ASP.NET, MVC, Ajax, WCF,SQL)

£55000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Full Stack ...

AIFMD Business Analyst / Consultant - Investment Management

£450 - £600 per day: Harrington Starr: AIFMD Business Analyst / Consultant - I...

Day In a Page

Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?