FA Education are committed to supporting football coaches in the role that they do, at every level of the game. As part of their new 4-year strategy to further improve support to coaches and the game, from April 2021 FA Education will take on full responsibility for delivering all coach education.
This change coincides with improvements FA Education are making to the ways through which coaches can learn. In addition to face-to-face support delivered by the Grassroots coach development team and the tutor-learner interactions that underpin many of the courses, new digital learning opportunities are being introduced to give coaches the option to pick and choose learning that interests them and undertake it at a time that suits them.
This modernised offer which utilises digital means in addition to the traditional face to face and pitchside sessions will open up more learning opportunities for coaches and help develop a culture of on-going learning.
Will any existing courses be affected?
The first grassroots courses to be redeveloped and launched in April 2021 will be:
• FA Level 1
• Safeguarding Children Workshop
• Introduction to First Aid in Football
We are working with FA Education to support all learners who have started, but have yet to complete one of these qualifications, and will be contacting all relevant learners to highlight their options.
What does this mean for the County FA?
In the short-term we are going to be working with FA Education on the transition of existing learners, but our long-term focus will be on coach development. Our aim will be to ensure our clubs receive the support they need to enable their coaches to provide great sessions for their players.
From next year we’ll also be working with FA Education to deliver an exciting programme of learning opportunities across a range of topics relevant to our coaches and the grassroots game.
What happens now?
Once the national lockdown restrictions have been lifted, we will contact all learners currently working towards a qualification to confirm their options for completing their course; we hope to be able to do this by early December subject to government guidance.
Want to continue your learning journey?
Although COVID-19 is having a significant impact on our ability to deliver any coach education, there are lots of immediate opportunities to continue your learning journey. The Boot Room is a vital coaching resource and contains a range of different learning resources for coaches to explore; from articles on emerging trends and latest best practice to inspirational interviews, you can also browse FA learning opportunities and find the next step on your coaching journey.
For anyone looking to take a more active role and volunteer in their local club or start their coaching journey, The FA Playmaker course, supported by BT, is a free online course providing users with the knowledge and skills to make a positive difference at their local club or team. You can sign up to the course at TheFA.com/Playmaker.
Once these challenging times are over, we are confident the changes to coach education will help coaches in the best way possible to provide safe, fun and engaging football experiences for players, helping them to develop their skills and to benefit from all the brilliant things that Football can provide.
Please visit The FA’s Help Centre for any further queries.