Black History Month - The Return of Coach Education
20 September 2020 marked the return to the London FA Coach Education programme.
Many courses have been postponed since March 2020, so after six months London FA were happy to restart coach education in line with new COVID-19 restrictions and regulations.
The Coach Education team, alongside our tutors, have worked hard to make sure we can deliver some sort of coach education programme before the end of the year. We have prioritised courses which were in-flight at the start of the pandemic and will look to continue courses which had been pre-booked throughout the year. Learners who have booked onto courses will receive communication regarding the status of their course over the next two weeks.
David Streetley, one of the tutors running the course over the weekend, posted on Twitter that: “6 months on & great to be back tutoring at London FA continuing L1 we started in March at Douglas Eyre”.
Another tutor, Andre Thomas, also wrote: “Honoured to be a part of their coaching journey. Having been made to wait 6 months, they didn’t miss a beat. Looking forward to the rest of the course.”
Taking a Knee
Before the start of the practical session, our tutors and learners chose to take a knee, as seen in matches in the Premiere League. Dr Colin King, FA tutor and MBE for services for equality and diversity, reflects on the significance of taking a knee in football.
“September 20 marked the return to coach education,” he said.
“It was a fantastic commitment from both tutors and coaches to mark the event with the knee, not as a symbolic gesture, but a start of a process to address equality in coach education and coaching. The purpose to explain how the role of Colin Kaepernick, and the history in which Josiah Wedgwood, a slave in 1787 took the knee to his white slave master, with the words ‘Am I not a man and a brother?’ In this we agree with sentiments of QPR, this a moment, and a start of transition from the knee to real changes for particular Black and Asian coaches.
“We want to see a new approach to abolition (liberation) in football, in which nobody should be dehumanised or felt enslaved to the point of kneeling to their assumed superiors. Consequently, it’s important that the London Football Association is committed to real change, that the knee is a state of intent to ensure we stand up together from the knee to work across the colour line for real equality. In this we use Black His/Herstory Month to look at how coach education can develop an empowerment model of learning and greater representation in the structure of football. To make the knee a memory in which we confront the immediate challenges and risks to Black and Asian communities in relation COVID-19, mental health and coaching.”