Club Code of Ethics
Code for Players
- To play by the rules
- To never argue with an official. If I disagree, to have my captain, coach, or manager approach the official during the break, or after the match
- Control my temper. I accept that verbal abuse of officials and other players, deliberately distracting or provoking an opponent are not acceptable or permitted behaviours in the Club
- To be a good sport, applaud good play made by either my team or the opposition
- To treat all players and team mates as I would like to be treated
- I will co-operate with my coach, team mates and the officials of the club
- To respect the rights, dignity and well-being of all participants regardless of their gender, cultural background, ability, or religion
- If I have concerns to talk to my coach or to a member of the committee.
Code for Parents
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- To remember that children participate in sport for their enjoyment, not mine
- To encourage children to participate, not force them
- To focus on the child’s participation, and not on winning and losing
- To encourage children to always play according to the rules and to settle disagreements without resorting to hostility or violence
- To never ridicule or shout at a child for making a mistake or losing a competition
- To remember that children are led by example
- To support all efforts to remove verbal and physical abuse from sporting activities
- To respect the officials’ decisions and teach children to do likewise
- To show appreciation for volunteer coaches and officials
- To respect the rights, dignity and worth of every young person regardless of their gender, cultural background, ability, or religion
- If I have any issues to do with my child, I will discuss with their manager or a committee member
- Not to discuss other players in public
- To support my child’s manager, and be proud of my child’s progress at all times
- To support the club in the long term football development of my child
Code for Coaches
- Remember that as a coach of under-age teams you must act in "loco parentis" and to that extent your duty of care is more onerous than that of a coach to an adult team.
- Remember that young people need a coach whom they can respect. Lead by example.
- Be generous with your praise when it is deserved.
- Never ridicule or shout at players for making mistakes or losing a match.
- Teach your players that the Laws of the Game are mutual agreements, which no one should evade or break.
- Be reasonable in your demands on the players' time, energy and enthusiasm. Remember that they have other interests and demands on their time.
- Prepare young players for inter-class and inter-school activities.
- Ensure that all players participate in matches. The "average" players require and deserve equal time.
- Remember that young players play for fun and enjoyment and that skill learning and playing for fun have priority over highly structured competition - Winning is not the only objective.
- Develop player and team respect for the ability of opponents, as well as for the judgement of Match referees, assistant referees and opposing coaches.
- Insist on fair play and disciplined play. Do not tolerate foul play, fighting or foul language.
- Be prepared to take off an offending player
- Set realistic goals for the team and individual players and do not push young players into adult like competitions.
- Encourage young players to develop basic skills and sportsmanship. Avoid over specialisation in positional play during their formative years.
- Create a safe and enjoyable environment in which to train and play.
- Do not over-burden younger players with too much information.
- Make a personal commitment to keep yourself informed on sound coaching principles and methods, and on the principles of growth and development of young people.
- Be aware of the effect you have on growing children.
- Never criticise the referee or assistant referee during or after a match in front of players or spectators.
- Always thank the match officials and if they have made decisions which require clarification, discuss the problems after everyone has changed.
- Seek and follow the advice of a doctor in determining when an injured player is ready to play again.
- Ensure that proper equipment and facilities are available at all times
- Ensure that all your players know that bullying whether verbal or physical will not be tolerated.
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Child Protection Officer - Role
The appointment of Club Children's Officers is an essential element in the creation of a quality atmosphere in any club. They act as a resource to members with regard to children's issues and also ensure that children have a voice in the running of the club and can freely talk of their experiences.
Government guidelines advise that a children's officer should be appointed by all clubs and this should be done in accordance with recommended selection and recruitment procedures. The appointment of this person should be carried out in consultation with juvenile members and their parent/guardians.
The children's Office should have the following functions;
- to promote the Code of Ethics and Good Practice
- to influence policy and practice and to prioritise children's needs
- to ensure that children know how and whom they can report their concerns to within the club. Information disclosed by a child should be dealt with in accordance with the Department of Health and Children's Guidelines "Children First"
- to encourage the participation of parents/guardians in club activities
- to co-operate with parents to ensure that each child enjoys his/her participation in soccer
- to act as a resource with regard to best practice in children's soccer
- to report regularly to the Club Management Committee
- to monitor changes in membership and follow up any unusual dropout, absenteeism or club transfers by children or coaches.
Children's Officers do not have the responsibility of investigating or validating child protection concerns within the club and have no counselling or therapeutic role. This responsibility lies with the Health Boards and Gardai.
Full details of policies and guidelines for the supervision and management of children in sport can be read at www.fai.ie.
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