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Notts County Women and Girls Code of Conduct

Season 2020-2021

A code of conduct is not a legal requirement, but it is important to have one in order to identify a set of standards and outline the behaviour we expect of those involved, including coaches, parents and players.

Notts County Women and Girls is supporting the FA’s Respect Programme, to ensure football can be enjoyed in a safe and positive environment. The attitudes, behaviours and standards must be reflected accordingly by all of those involved. Considering the above, there are three codes of conduct that are important for the 2020-2021 season.  

All codes of conduct have been written in line with the FA Charter Standard programme. The Charter Standard scheme establishes minimum standards for football and acts as a quality assurance mechanism recognising and rewarding well run clubs. As a benchmark for quality, it aims to improve the playing experience for all. By signing up to participate, players and parents are automatically agreeing to abide by our codes of conduct. There are some general rules which we do expect all players and parents to abide by:  

Complaints

In the event that any player/guardian feels that he or she has suffered discrimination in any way, or that the Club Policy, Rules or Code of Conduct havr been broken, he or she should follow the procedures below:

Your report should be made in writing to sara.marshall@nottscountyfc.co.uk and include the following details:

  • What took place, as well as when and where  
  • Any witness statements and names
  • Names of any others who have been treated in a similar way
  • Details of any former complaints made about the incident, date when and to whom made 

The Club Committee will sit any hearing that is requested. The Club Committee will have the power to:  

  • Warn as to future conduct
  • Suspend from the club
  • Remove from the club

Players' Code of Conduct 2020-21 

Obligations towards the game - A player should:  

  • Make every effort to develop their own sporting abilities in terms of skill, technique, tactics and stamina
  • Give maximum effort and strive for the best possible performance during training and matches
  • Avoid all forms of unsporting behaviour (eg. time-wasting, diving, etc.)
  • Not use inappropriate language
  • At all times represent Notts County Women and Girls in a professional manner  

Regarding dress, presentation, attitude, conduct and professionalism:

  • Adhere to the young players' Respect Code of Conduct  
  • Endeavour to lead a healthy, active lifestyle outside of Notts County. Follow a lifestyle appropriate to development – spending leisure time positively: eating, drinking, relaxing and sleeping sensibly before a game
  • Remove ALL jewellery prior to training and fixtures
  • Have suitable, clean playing equipment ready for matches and training 

Obligations towards one’s own squad - A player should:  

  • Arrive promptly at the time specified for both training and matchdays  
  • Be respectful towards all players
  • Encourage team-mates at every opportunity and play their part in creating a positive team ethic
  • Behave in a positive, professional manner at all times throughout their engagement  

Obligations towards the spectators - A player should:  

  • Show due respect to the interests of spectators  
  • Respect the Laws of the Game and competition rules
  • Accept success and failure equally and with dignity at all times 

Respect towards oppponents - A player should:  

  • Treat opponents with due respect at all times, irrespective of the result of the game
  • Safeguard the physical fitness of opponents, avoid violence and rough play, and help injured opponents

Respect towards the match officials - A player should:  

  • Accept the decision of the official without protest
  • Avoid words or actions which may mislead an official
  • Show due respect towards officials

Respect towards coaches - A player should:  

  • Abide by the instructions of their coaches, provided they do not contradict the spirit of this Code.  
  • Show due respect towards their coach at all times  
  • Accept any decisions made by their coach regarding football matters at all times
  • Show due respect towards the coach of the opposition  
  • Let your coach know at least one hour before training/matches of any non-attendance and why

Coaches' Code of Conduct 2020-21 

The coach is responsible for ensuring their conduct is always professional and sets a suitable example for players and parents to follow. In general, coaches will:  

  • Be punctual and organised, in particular arriving at the appointed time 
  • Visually portray a professional image at all times
  • Speak to parents and children in a polite, respectful and courteous manner at all times
  • Act as a role model for young players
  • Foster an environment that promotes learning and development for all involved, in equal measure 

Obligations towards the game - The coach will:  

  • Set a positive example for others, particularly young players  
  • Avoid all forms of gamesmanship and encourage their players to do the same
  • Show due respect to match officials and others involved in the game (eg. opposition players and coaches)
  • Not use or tolerate inappropriate language or behaviour

Obligations towards the team - The coach will:  

  • Make every effort to develop the sporting, technical and tactical levels of the team and more specifically, individual players 
  • Show due respect to the interests of players, coaches and other officials at their own club/team and others  

Respect towards match officials and opposition. The coach will:  

  • Accept the decisions of the official without protest
  • Avoid words or actions which may mislead a official 
  • Show due respect towards officials

Obligations to parents/carers. The coach will:  

  • Show due respect to the interests of parents at all times
  • Communicate effectively with parents/carers regarding training and matches 
  • Be open and honest with parents/carers at all times, explaining football decisions where necessary 

Parents' Code of Conduct 2020-21 

In general, parents will agree to:  

  • Ensure that the player is accompanied to pitch side for all sessions. The coach may need to communicate information to parents, which may be easiest to do face-to-face
  • Keep the club informed of any absences from training or matches (due to injury, holiday etc.). We work with more than 150 players across all the age groups, so it is important parents can support us as much as possible in respect of communication 

In more football-specific terms, as parent/carer or spectators’ expectations and attitudes have a significant bearing on a child’s attitude towards:  

  • Football in general  
  • Other players
  • Officials
  • Managers/coaches  

As a parent, I will:  

  • Remember that children play for FUN
  • Let the coaches do their job and not confuse the players by telling them what to do
  • Encourage the players to respect the opposition and match officials
  • Never criticise a player for making a mistake - mistakes are part of learning

Notts County Women and Girls encourage parents/carers/spectators to:  

  • Avoid coaching the child during training or games - please leave that to the coaches
  • Not to shout and scream
  • Respect the referee/coach's decision
  • Give attention to each of the children involved in football not just the most talented
  • Give encouragement to everyone to participate in football

If parents have a grievance with the coach, please discuss this discreetly with Stephen Rooth.

NOTE - Notts County Women’s FC has the right to remove any parent or spectator from home matches, away matches, training facilities, events or tournaments if any of the above rules have been breached.  

Safeguarding and Welfare of Players 2020/21 

As an FA Charter Standard Club, Notts County Women’s FC acknowledges its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of every child and young person who has been entrusted to its care and is committed to working to provide a safe environment for all members. A child or young person is anyone under the age of 18 engaged in any club football activity.  

As such, we subscribe to The Football Association’s Safeguarding Children - Policy and Procedures and endorse and adopt the Policy Statement contained in that document.  

The key principles of The FA Safeguarding Children Policy are that:  

  • The child’s welfare is, and must always be, the paramount consideration  
  • All children and young people have a right to be protected from abuse regardless of their age, gender, disability, culture, language, racial origin, religious beliefs or sexual orientatio
  • All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
  • Working in partnership with other organisations, children and young people and their parents/carers is essential 

We acknowledge that every child or young person who plays or participates in football should be able to take part in an enjoyable and safe environment and be protected from poor practice and abuse.  

While the full safeguarding policy and procedures will be distributed to all members of the club at the start of the season, it is important to identify that the club’s Welfare Officer (CWO) is the first point of contact for all Club committee members regarding concerns about the welfare of any child or young person. The CWO will liaise directly with the County Football Association’s Welfare Officer (CFA WO) and will be familiar with the procedures for referring any concerns. They will also play a proactive role in increasing awareness of Respect, poor practice and abuse amongst their Club members.  

Furthermore, we must emphasise that safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility. If you are worried about a child, it is important that you report your concerns - no action is not an option.  

  • If you are worried about a child, then you need to report your concerns to the CWO  
  • If the issue is one of poor practice they will either deal with the matter themselves or seek advice from the CFA Welfare Officer
  • If the concern is more serious – possible child abuse – they will, where possible, contact the CFA Welfare Officer first, then immediately contact the Police or Children’s Services
  • If the child needs immediate medical treatment, take them to a hospital or call an ambulance and tell them this is a child protection concern
  • Let your CFA Welfare Officer know what action you have taken
  • If at any time you are not able to contact your Club Welfare Officer or the matter is clearly serious then you can contact your CFA Welfare Officer directly, contact the Police or Children’s Social Care, or call the NSPCC 24-hour Helpline for advice on 0808 800 5000/text 88858/email help@nspcc.org.uk 

Further advice on Safeguarding Children matters can be obtained from: