The Gills were one of 28 clubs to attend the training event in February
The Gillingham FC Community Trust (GFCCT) were invited to attend The FA and Premier League L3 Physical Education and School Sport Tutor (PESS) Training event at Warwick University during the February half-term.
28 delegates from various Premier League and Football League clubs attended the event, which was led by The Football Association (FA) and The Premier League Charitable Fund, and aimed at supporting football club staff with the delivery of high quality primary school PE.
By attending the event, football club stuff from GFCCT are now able to tutor the L3 Physical Education School Sport Qualification to GFCCT staff in order for them to be suitably qualified to support and deliver high quality PE provision in primary schools.
The first two days of the five day residential course consisted of The FA ‘Develop The Developers’ training, led by Les Howie and Roger Davies from The National FA. The event was supported by Ross McKinley from The Premier League Charitable Fund, which links in with the partnership that GFCCT have with being a ‘Premier League Primary Stars’ Club.
On the third day, FA National Foundation Phase Lead Coach Peter Sturgess led the morning theory session, explaining the “Developing Child” and the foundation phase England DNA, and how this links to high quality PE provision. The afternoon was practical focused with multiple active participation sessions being delivered.
The final two days were focused specifically on the L3 PESS qualification, and was delivered by The National FA PE Unit. Attendees learnt about methods of learning, marking, sharing of good practice and micro teaching sessions.
GFCCT Head of Football and Sports Development, Simon Hodge, who attended the training event explained: “With the newly formed partnership GFCCT have working with the Premier League Charitable Fund, it was a pleasure to be able to attend this event, especially as it was only the second time this type of event has happened. Being able to meet delegates from other clubs to share good practice was a valuable experience. To see The FA and Premier League working in close partnership in order to support the development of children is fantastic, but they are also keen to support GFCCT and our provisions across the Medway Towns and throughout the county of Kent.”
Jack Knighton, GFCCT Participation Development Officer, went onto explain more about the Premier League Stars Programme: “The GFCCT Primary Stars Programme is a programme designed to help develop and improve the sporting opportunities for all children across Medway and Kent. We’ve worked with 480 children from 21 primary schools during the first school term. The sessions are delivered within school curriculum time as well as after school and during the evenings and weekends.
“We have been really pleased to see some great success from the programme, with children improving their education and being able to access better sporting opportunities. Lots of children have joined local sports clubs after taking part in our PE lessons and school clubs, and this is due to the help of the Premier League. We hope this support continues to allow us to reach more children in the Medway Towns and Kent.”
The training event now means that with the support of the FA PE Unit, Simon Hodge can co-tutor the L3 PESS to GFCCT coaching staff, to enhance their qualifications in delivering high quality PE sessions in partner primary schools in Medway and Kent. This will certainly support the development of primary school aged children, and will also enhance the opportunity for more GFCCT staff to become confident in delivering a range of high quality practical sports sessions.
Find out more about the Gillingham FC Community Trust’s work here, or on Twitter @GillsCommunity