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The benefits of OPAL

Childhood has changed, and we can no longer assume that any child is able to experience full and rich play opportunities outside of school.

Play teaches children all of the things that need to be learnt but cannot be taught. 

As an OPAL school, we see the following benefits for our children:

  • Behaviour - happy and stimulated children have fewer issues in the playground
  • Accidents - OPAL schools have up to 80% fewer reported accidents
  • Staff well-being - Supervising happier children leads to happier staff
  • Teachers - consistently report more teaching time in afternoon lessons
  • Self-regulation - our children learn to self-regulate through practice, trust and freedom
  • Physical activity - all children, including girls, SEN and non-sporty children are significantly more active
  • Mental well-being - Research shows OPAL children are happier and self-reporting improved mental health
  • Social and emotional development - Good play in the laboratory of life where relationships are practised
  • Links to formal learning - Many OPAL schools report increased creativity, imagination and collaborative skills
  • Attendance - children can't wait to come to OPAL schools because they have such fun
  • Parents - we all want our children to be happy. Well-informed parents at OPAL schools love it that their children are happier
  • Rights - Play is a child's right as recognised by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
  • Risk - OPAL schools report significant improvements in children's ability to identify and manage risk