The Scarborough Junior Football Club (SJFC) is committed to forming fair, even and competitive teams that enable players of all abilities to have fun and actively participate in order to improve their knowledge and skills of the game.
This policy is designed to balance various objectives with respect to player attraction, retention, and development. This policy also aims to establish clear expectations amongst coaches, players, parents and guardians regarding team nominations and the allocation of players to teams.
The intent of this policy is to:
a) Clearly outline the team nomination process for returning players and those new to the Club
b) Set clear expectations for coaches, players, parents and guardians with respect to the allocation of players to teams when more than one team exists within a year group
c) Provide coaches with a decision-making framework for the allocation of players to teams when more than one team exists within a year group
d) Set expectations for coaches when the Club fields more than one team in the 18’s competition
This policy is guided by The Scarborough Way and the various policies implemented by the Australian Football League (AFL), the WA Football Commission (WAFC), and the Claremont District.
Adopting a Club Mentality
Coaches, players and their families are encouraged to adopt a club mentality rather than an individual team mentality. This will encourage long-term friendships that extend beyond school groups and minimises the impact when players move between teams or teams merge during their junior football career.
To foster this outcome, the Club encourages teams in the same year group to train together as a squad in order to:
- Build a strong Club culture
- Encourage strong friendships between a larger group of players, parents and guardians to make any reallocation of players or team mergers less daunting for players and their families
- Achieve more effective training sessions through larger player numbers
- Keep players engaged during training by implementing a hub training model
- Expose players to a variety of coaches and coaching styles
- Share resources, e.g. oval space, coaches, equipment, etc.
The number of teams nominated in each competition will be based on WAFC POL.10A Competitions Policy: Team Selection & Nominations. Only players registered, with all fees paid, will be considered when deciding how many teams to nominate. Any exceptions to this will be at the discretion of the SJFC Registrar. Players will not be permitted to play in the fixtured competition unless they are registered with all fees are paid in full, i.e. they are “financial” members.
A priority registration period will be used to maximise the opportunity for SJFC players from the previous season to play for the Club again. After the priority registration period, registrations will be open to new and returning players on a “first come first served” basis. The priority period end date will be advertised on the Club website (www.scarbjfc.com). Players registering after the team nomination date will be accepted by agreement of the team’s Coach and SJFC Registrar
The priority registration period does not apply to Auskick. There are no limits on the number of Auskick players, and all players registering for Auskick will be automatically accepted.
When more than one SJFC team exists in the same year group, the Club will, as far as possible, apply the following hierarchy of principles when selecting players for each team:
- Even Numbers: The Club will endeavour to field teams with equal player numbers.
- Even Ability: The Club will endeavour to field teams of equal strength. To achieve this outcome the coaches within a year group shall apply the “1 to 5” rating system described in WAFC POL.10A Competitions Policy: Team Selection & Nominations, or an equivalent methodology.
- Friendship Groups: The Club will endeavour to ensue each player is able to play with at least one close friend. Players will not be allocated, or teams built, solely according to school lines. As a community club, this principle aims to encourage long-term friendships that extend beyond school groups.
- Annual Rotation: This team selection process will be performed each season, i.e. players will not simply be “carried forward”. Rotating players between teams encourages a club mentality and enables players to experience different coaching and playing styles.
In Years 3 to 6 the emphasis is on participation and enjoyment; there are no ladders or finals for these year groups. Additional goals in these year groups include the development of football skills, the nurturing of physical and emotional development, and general well-being through involvement in team-based sports with friends from school, the community, Auskick, and other extra-curricular activities. For this reason, all players (except the coach’s children) should expect to play in a variety of teams (under different coaches) during these years.
When more than one SJFC team exists in the 18’s Competition, the respective coaches shall work together to:
- Strengthen SJFC’s ‘Club First’ culture and develop friendships by training together as a squad
- Ensure both 18’s teams have adequate player numbers available for each game
- Provide the opportunity for players to further develop their skills by playing in the higher division when they are ready and motivated to do so
- Provide flexibility in meeting the needs of all their players
- Maintain and build a meaningful relationship with the Scarborough Amateur Football Club by supporting player transition and retention from junior football to senior football at Scarborough Amateur Football Club
Decision to Merge or Split Teams
With a focus on participation, SJFC aims to maximise the amount of opportunities for as many players as possible to play football. Whilst denying registrations and turning players away is avoided where possible, the Club acknowledges there are complexities with each year group that must be considered on a case by case basis when deciding to merge or split teams.