A pandemic policy for children to arrive and stay in their sports kit on the days they have PE is helping to save time and create much-needed space, according to headteachers. 

Dr Victoria Carr, the head of Woodlands Primary School in Ellesmere Port, now has five extra spaces for one-to-one or group learning from former cloakroom areas where PE bags would have been stored. 

“There is a lot of time taken on getting them dressed and undressed in their PE kit and actually in terms of continuous provision it really benefits that,” she said. 

Joanne Butterworth, head of St Thomas More RC Primary in Manchester, said pupils coming in wearing their PE kits helped to reduce transmission as they “don’t have to get changed, there are not lots of PE bags being stored, and items get washed weekly”. 

She said the schools would keep the change as it was liked by parents and children.

The Association for Physical Education said that it was up to schools to decide if pupils could come in wearing their PE kit. It recommended schools review their health and safety policy to ensure pupils wore clothing that was “fit for purpose according to the activity, environment and weather conditions”.