Forum 7 - December 2012
The seventh Officials' Forum was held at the Alexander Stadium, Birmingham. This December Forum took a slightly different format, with some places available to any Level 2 and above official who wanted to contribute. The topic was Officials’ Education and present were a few officials who had gone through the whole system since its inception – their input was invaluable.
You can download presentations on the right.
In total there were 45 attendees and most of the day was taken up with workshop discussions.
Following a chance to chat and catch up over coffee, Barry Parker opened the proceedings and introduced some key people: Malcolm Rogers (Chair of the Technical Advisory Group), Chris Cohen (TAG and Paralympic Games Athletics Manager), Moira Gallagher (Chair of UK Education Group), Paula Gowing (Senior Administrator for Officials at UKA), Lynette Smith (England Athletics Head of Member - ship Services) who handles membership for England Athletics and for UKA, and Cheryl Moore (England Athletics Officials’ Education Coordinator).
Education Group member Chris Lockley presented some eye-opening course statistics. To ensure all officials get the chance to attend a course, most are run with a lower number of delegates than the break-even 18. He also showed that the retention rate of transfer from course to licenced official is another area where improvement can be made (apart from Health and Safety which almost 700 officials have completed). A most interesting statistic was that over a quarter of applicants only want to join a course 10 days before it is held (i.e. after the deadline).
Chris Cohen briefly spoke about future plans for courses and the education structure, including the possibility of a course for club ‘helpers’, and how to fit in with the worldwide system for higher levels. Three breakout groups then discussed Level 2 course content and delivery. It was fed back that perhaps the Generic, H&S and Discipline Specific sections could be combined in other ways, and that online learning has some place, although having a practical element, such as that adopted in courses organised by the Herts Network, was a popular choice, and that a stadium walk round for all disciplines would be advantageous. It was noted that Clerk of Course con - tent was lacking in Level 2 and that reference material for non-technical roles is urgently needed. One group noted that COfSecs were not notified when an official has attended an out-of- County course – this will be rectified shortly.
After lunch there were more group discussions, this time on mentoring, flow of course levels, higher levels and what happens after courses. Everyone gathered together at the end to listen to Barry Parker present on the Role and expectation of the COfSec which was developed following the previous Forum. The opportunity to expand on the points was given. After a final Q&A it was time to finish and for attendees to reflect on the day.
Going forward, a Forum will be held in the Autumn to split it evenly through the year with the main UKA Officials’ Conference which takes place in the Spring. Any suggestions can be directed to Nicola firstname.lastname@example.org