Video: Children skip school for contest in Leeds

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Hundreds of pupils skipped school for the day to attend a competition at Leeds Beckett University as part of a sporting initiative aimed at boosting health, fitness and self-esteem.

Youngsters from 60 primary schools across the city have been taking part in an innovative skipping project, which has rapidly grown over the last few years.

PIC: Tony Johnson

PIC: Tony Johnson

This year 2,500 Year Two children took part in 10 competition events at high schools and leisure centres in different areas of the city, hosted by Skipping School.

Jodi Corcoran, who runs the Leeds-based company with her father Chris, said: “At each event we had five to six schools competing against each other on a range of skipping challenges and games, where they accumulate points throughout. The team with the most points overall are declared the winners in the presentation ceremony at the end.

“The winning teams from each of these events took part in our first ever Leeds City Final this week.”

The grand final, featuring 11 schools and 330 children, took place at the sports arena at Leeds Beckett University’s Headingley campus.

“The atmosphere was electric, and what a sight it was to see 330 children all skipping and having a great time together,” said Ms Corcoran.

It was pupils from Corpus Christi Catholic Primary, in Halton Moor, who were left jumping for joy after they were crowned the 2017 skipping champions at the end of the three-hour event.

Skipping School was set up in 2003 and the company has taught skipping skills to more than one million children.

Ms Corcoran said: “We teach agility, balance and co-ordination, and inspire determination and enthusiasm.”