Healthy relationships? An examination of health and physical education school-provider relationships in Aotearoa New Zealand

9 Sep 2014

Abstract: Recent research in New Zealand and internationally has indicated an abundance of external providers operating in the Health and Physical Education (HPE) sector and an increasing use of programmes created by these providers during curriculum time. This is a recent phenomenon with limited research about the way multiple programmes operate within schools and the way the relationships between providers and schools are managed. Much of the previous research related to external providers of HPE programmes has examined the effectiveness of a single programme or has been part of broader HPE research. The study undertaken for this thesis examined the relationships between external providers and schools in an attempt to develop some key principles for both schools and providers to take into account when engaging in a relationship with the other. The research examined how each of the parties within a school-provider relationship viewed the relationship, the curriculum and programmes offered by the providers. The study also looked at the way the programmes worked within schools, the reasons for their use and the effects of using the programmes during curriculum time. This thesis reports on strong relationships between the providers and schools based on mutual trust. The research also found both parties within school-provider relationships believed the use of providers provided higher quality HPE as it allowed students greater opportunities in HPE led by experts in the area. The discussion considers further effects of these relationships and potential principles that may be used for schools and providers to ensure the breadth and depth of the HPE curriculum is taught to students.

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