We received Lottery funding from Sport England to bring more competitive cricket to secondary schools. We have a three-pronged approach to deliver this part of the programme:
• establish satellite clubs in schools
• embed competition within them
• provide training opportunities for young people
Local cricket clubs are working closely with coaches, young people and teachers to set up a satellite cricket club on school sites. Pupils are at the heart of decision making and shape how the school club is run. Activity at the club may range from extra-curricular coaching and forums to discuss club activity, to organising social events and ambassador visits.
As well as providing a robust transition to their local cricket club, the satellite clubs give young people a sense of ownership and help them develop important life skills such as leadership, teamwork and cooperation. These skills will help them become role models in their local community to inspire younger children to take up the game.
Competition is a key motivation for young people in secondary schools so we came up with the Chance to Compete cup; featuring fast-moving eight-a-side matches played in less than an hour.
During the winter, schools are holding indoor soft-ball competitions in school sports halls and community centres, with the hardball equivalent played outside during the Spring and Summer terms. The new offer to secondary schools will increase competitive cricket opportunities by encouraging each to play a minimum of five competitive matches annually.
Finally, the secondary school offer will include training for young people to support the long-term impact of the programme. Pupils aged 14 to 16 with an interest in developing their cricket knowledge can take a ‘Cricket Young Leaders Award’.
The course, delivered by ECB trained tutors, enables young people to become more actively involved in the planning and delivery of club and competitive cricket opportunities. Additional training will provide young people with business skills to help them run their clubs in a professional way.
See how teenage girls at Flegg High School are taking up cricket and excelling, thanks to your donations: