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Risk management practices in sport in independent schools in Gauteng Province, South Africa
Physical Education and sport has a natural place in education whether the approach is formal or informal. Providing learners with the opportunity to play sport at school and to participate in Physical Education ensure that they receive education that addresses the body, mind and spirit. Participation in sport and physical activities in the education environment involves, next to enjoyment, a range of risks. Unfortunately incidents of injuries and accidents that could have been prevented do occur. It is an educator’s duty to ensure that proper safety practices and procedures are established in order to prevent injuries. This study sought to identify the key problems surrounding the safety of learners engaged in physical activities in the context of physical activities in South African independent schools. The study analyzed the qualifications and experience of sport and Physical Educationists and educators’ knowledge of risk management practices. An assessment was made of the extent to which risk management procedures were implemented in various schools in order to prevent injuries from occurring. The study was conducted from a positivistic paradigm and the design comprised a survey. A previously validated instrument was used to gather data and sampling was done amongst independent schools in Gauteng. The study has established that in general, safety practices and procedures at independent schools in Gauteng are implemented in a prudent and responsible manner. In some schools and with some aspects improvements can still be made but the overall picture appears professional and promising.