Ultimate in schools

Banner image: Airbadgers, Winners Junior (U20) Outdoors

Evolution, Winners U20 Mixed

Airbadgers, Winners U14 Women Indoors

Flux, Winners U17 Women Indoors

In 2019, 29 schools fielded 115 teams across the UKU junior and school competitions. We owe a huge thanks to the teachers in those schools who introduce ultimate to hundreds of pupils every year, and give up so much free time for the after-school clubs, and bringing the teams to weekend tournaments across the country.

Schools are going to have an incredibly challenging time in 2020-21. Now, more than ever, the teachers and pupils in ultimate-playing schools need our help and support. If you have been thinking about setting up a youth section in your club, our Safeguarding Pack has everything you need.

UKU School Affiliation is free. The main purpose of the scheme is to send free or subsidised Ultimate discs to schools and set up some points of contact so that we can send them news and information. We are tremendously grateful to Discraft for their support.

Our figures for 2019 were typical of the last few years (and only partially overlap with the School Games numbers below).

  • 162 Affiliated Schools.

  • Pupils Playing in Affiliated Schools: ~16500 in curriculum, ~4000 in extra-curricular clubs.

  • 550 discs sold or sent to schools and youth organisations.

Since we started the scheme, we've sent thousands of free Ultimate discs to schools around the UK.

The School Games

The School Games offers a ready made competition structure that schools know and engage with in huge numbers. The format we recommend for Ultimate is 4-a-side, mixed.

In 2018/19 Ultimate was launched as part of the School Games in England. The figures below outline the success we saw in our first year.

  • 781 schools reported Ultimate activity as part of their provision.

  • 3,736 young people participated in inter-school competitions.

  • Participation figures show close to a 50:50 gender split.

  • We have activity recorded in every single School Games region.

In June 2019, Ultimate joined the ISF World Championships and a team from Twycross House School (you may know them as Flux) travelled to Le Mans, France. They did brilliantly and earned the silver medal.

The World Schools’ Ultimate Championships is a mixed division event, played outdoors, 5-a-side. Our understanding is that Ultimate is a permanent fixture in the ISF championships, which take place every two years. We held our first 5-a-side Mixed Outdoor Nationals in Sept 2019, and had expected the 2020 event to act as a qualifier to the 2021 championships. (We are waiting for news about the 2021 event.) Our long term aim is to connect the School Games structure into this Mixed Nationals event, creating a pathway from after-school matches to a World Championships.