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The FA Charter Standard

Proud to support places where people want to play football 

WELCOME TO THE FA CHARTER STANDARD

Proud to support leagues and clubs where people want to play football

The FA is PROUD to make Charter Standard part of grassroots football in England.

The FA Charter Standard Programme is The FA’s accreditation scheme open to all grassroots clubs* and leagues**. It aims to raise standards in the grassroots game through supporting the development of clubs and leagues. It also recognises and rewards commitment, quality and achievement.

These are the clubs and leagues who demonstrate they offer well-run and sustainable football. Those who achieve The FA Charter Standard are proud to prioritise qualified coaching and safeguarding as well as the values of The FA’s Respect Programme as part of their game.

Interim FA Charter Standard club accreditation criteria 2020/21

COVID-19 has impacted on The FA’s and County FA’s ability to offer face to face education. Interim requirements for The FA Charter Standard club accreditation criteria (coaching, first aid and safeguarding) are in place for the season 2020/21 .

Long term plans are being made to offer alternative, sustainable delivery models however it is necessary to make temporary changes for the 2020/21 season. These apply to new and existing FA Charter Standard accredited clubs.

We encourage all clubs to explore the opportunity to become FA Charter Standard accredited, qualifying the relevant individuals to make the on-pitch environment a safe place and putting in place the policies and documents off-pitch to make sure they are built to last. When the time comes there will be an expectation and commitment for all accredited clubs to maintain or raise the standards and requirements that make The FA’s kitemark accreditation programme PROUD to be the best.

To view the interim criteria for 2020/21 please download this document.

PROUD to support clubs and leagues get up to the standard

Club accreditation

There are two different entry levels for The FA Charter Standard club accreditation:

  • The FA Charter Standard Youth
  • The FA Charter Standard Adult

Advanced levels are for clubs who offer more playing opportunities, look to grow participation, involve a variety of different people and offer different formats for male, female and disability players in their football environments:

  • The FA Charter Standard Development is aimed at clubs who are enhancing the quality and scope of their football offering
  • The FA Charter Standard Community acknowledges the most advanced level of club development and football provision

Clubs who achieve The FA Charter Standard accreditation are challenged to maintain high standards and, where appropriate, to improve and progress to new levels. Clubs that work in partnership can be linked and recognised to achieve the development or community club levels of accreditation

League accreditation

There is only one level of accreditation that grassroots leagues can achieve:

  • The FA Charter Standard League accreditation

The accreditation makes a positive difference to the way clubs and leagues are run and to people’s enjoyment of football. The FA aims to support all grassroots clubs and leagues to become FA Charter Standard accredited through our network of County FA’s.

Clubs and leagues work in partnership with County FAs to meet the criteria to achieve accreditation.

Make your club or league PROUD to achieve The FA Charter Standard accreditation 

If you’re interested in achieving The FA Charter Standard accreditation, or just want to find out more, let’s have a conversation contact Emma.Barnes@SurreyFA.com.

You can also visit our other relevant links to find out more about The FA Charter Standard programme.

Any club affiliated to a County FA that play in the National League System and below, likewise for women’s clubs that play outside the Women’s Super League (BARCLAYS FA WSL) and Women’s Championship (FA WC), tier 3 and below, can apply. Clubs must have at least one team playing within an FA sanctioned league.

Any league sanctioned to a County FA that are the National League System and below, likewise for women’s clubs that play outside the Women’s Super League (BARCLAYS FA WSL) and Women’s Championship (FA WC), tier 3 and below, can apply.

Get In Touch

Emma Barnes Senior Football Development Officer

By Phone:
 

01372 384 744 | 07961 475 213

By Email:

emma.barnes@surreyfa.com 


TAKE YOUR CLUB TO THE NEXT LEVEL

Applying for charter standard 

Achieving Charter Standard means your club can be proud to offer the best standard of grassroots football for your players and volunteers.

To get started, download the Charter Standard Application Form.
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FAQs

Clubs 

Any club affiliated to a County FA that play in the National League System and below, likewise for women’s clubs that play outside the Women’s Super League (BARCLAYS FA WSL) and Women’s Championship (FA WC), tier 3 and below, can apply. Clubs must have at least one team playing within an FA sanctioned league.

Leagues

Any league sanctioned to a County FA that are the National League System and below, likewise for women’s clubs that play outside the Women’s Super League (BARCLAYS FA WSL) and Women’s Championship (FA WC), tier 3 and below, can apply.

The base criteria for a league wanting to achieve The FA Charter Standard League award are:

  • Evidence of how the league plans to retain/grow the number of male, female and disability teams (mini-soccer, small sided and 11v11) as appropriate
  • At least 60% of teams in the league have Charter Standard Club status, working towards 100% within two seasons
  • The league has an equality policy and complaints procedure that adheres to The FA equality policy and complaints procedure template
  • The league has a safeguarding children policy and procedures that adheres to FA requirements (youth leagues only)
  • The Youth League Welfare Officer and Charter Standard League Co-ordinator sit on the league committee
  • The league has a web-based administration system for results, tables and fixtures. FULL-TIME is recommended for this purpose but it isn’t mandatory
  • The league has a development plan that identifies key development objectives and targets linked to the National Game Strategy key goals and enablers
  • As part of the benefits each Charter Standard League is eligible for two tickets to The FA Community Shield courtesy of McDonald's.

FA Charter Standard League primarily offers leagues a process to raise standards within leagues and a practical means to deliver initiatives in line with the needs of member clubs. The base criteria ensures that clubs within these leagues are consistent in delivering Respect, have a minimum Level 1 qualified coach with every team (Mini Soccer and youth football only), and have a qualified first aider. However for most leagues this is just the foundation on which they then build significant positive change and initiatives through the implementation of a league development plan.

The league development plan should be a clear set of actions that will make a practical difference to the operation of the league and the progress of the clubs/teams and players within it.

If you are looking to clarify your leagues purpose, raise standards in your league, use the huge influence of your league to affect change at grass roots level- then FA Charter Standard League is for you.

Clubs or leagues should contact their local County FA. Clubs and leagues can expect the support they need to understand what it takes for clubs and leagues to become accredited and assistance with relevant information, guidance and documentation

It’s FREE. The FA and County FA’s do not charge to become accredited. Clubs and leagues receive benefits and incentives to achieve, maintain and progress their accreditation.

Currently clubs complete an annual health check via The FA’s Whole Game System every season from September however for the 2020/21 season the Annual Health Check is suspended. Leagues are asked to renew their accreditation every three years whilst reviewing their development plan with their local County FA’s development team.

Leagues and clubs achieving The FA Charter Standard accreditation can be PROUD to be the best place for people to play and enjoy football within their football community.

They demonstrate positive football environments where people experience their football in a safe, fun and inclusive environment.

Whether you are male, female or have a disability, individuals including players, officials, spectators, referees and volunteers feel part of a team thanks to league and club accreditation as they aim to provide FOOTBALL FOR ALL.

For becoming The FA Charter Standard accredited, leagues and clubs receive access to benefits that help to attract and retain players, volunteers and supporters.

Both accredited leagues and clubs experience benefits, the level of which depends on the level of accreditation for clubs. These include:

  • Attracting and retaining players, supporters and volunteers through providing safe, fun and inclusive environments for all to experience and enjoy
  • Funding for football equipment
  • Access to promotional resources and guidance
  • Tailored support from The FA and County FAs

    Support and resources are available to accredited leagues and clubs help them achieve their ambitions including but not limited to:

  • Raising standards across the game
  • Creating positive match day environments
  • Establishing player pathways for continued participation, placing the player at the centre of all they do
  • Understanding the role they play in their football community
  • Becoming a sustainable and financially efficient organisations

Clubs

There is a minimum criteria for all clubs with some additional criteria specific to clubs with youth teams and clubs with adult teams.

On-pitch we look for the relevant individuals to hold certain qualifications to ensure they are educated, equipped and empowered to make the training and match day environment a great one.

Off-pitch we ask clubs to have relevant policies and documents in place to ensure they are structured correctly and built to last. FA templates of these policies and documents are available to adopt.

Higher levels of club accreditation are achievable for clubs who have the ambitions to provide more playing opportunities to more people. Clubs who achieve Development or Community club accreditation are given access to greater levels of support, benefits and equipment.

Leagues

There is only one level of accreditation leagues can apply for. The criteria focus on having in place a 3-year development plan, a minimum percentage of your member clubs accredited with ambitions to grow this percentage, implementation of The FA’s Respect Programme, a focused Referee Officer and an active link with other leagues to support players to find relevant places to continue playing their football.

The following rewards are available for accredited leagues and clubs from the 2020/21 season.

Clubs

  • Certification
  • Football Equipment
  • Access to promotional resources and guidance
  • Tailored support from The FA where applicable

Leagues

  • Certification
  • Football Equipment
  • Access to promotional resources and guidance
  • Tailored support from The FA where applicable

New Clubs will receive:

  • Adult - Digital welcome pack, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs
  • Youth - Digital welcome pack, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs & access to redeem a kit & equipment package
  • Development - Digital welcome pack, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs & access to redeem a kit & equipment package
  • Community - Digital welcome pack, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs & access to redeem a kit & equipment package

Existing Clubs will receive:

  • Adult - Digital certificate, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs
  • Youth - Digital certificate, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs
  • Development - Digital certificate, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs & access to redeem a kit & equipment package
  • Community - Digital certificate, digital promotional assets, Nike Strike footballs & access to redeem a kit & equipment package

New and existing leagues will receive:

  • Digital certificate, digital promotional assets, access to redeem a kit & equipment package

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