1. NAME OF THE ASSOCIATION
The Association shall be called ‘HERTFORDSHIRE SCHOOLS’ FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION’ (HSFA), and be affiliated to the English Schools’ Football Association (ESFA), South East England Schools’ Football Association (SEESFA) and Hertfordshire Football Association (HFA).
2. OBJECTS OF THE ASSOCIATION
The objects of the Association shall be:
(a) The mental, moral and physical development and improvement of schoolchildren and students up to and including eighteen years of age through the medium of Association Football.
3. MEMBERSHIP, VOTING POWERS, AFFILIATION FEES & COMPETITION FEES
(i) Membership of the Association shall be open to all DSFAs, LFOs, Primary, Secondary & Special Schools and Colleges in Hertfordshire, subject to the approval of the Executive Committee and payment of appropriate membership fees. Membership of the Association shall only be confirmed upon those DSFAs, LFOs, Primary, Secondary & Special Schools and Colleges who confirm their agreement to take part in a reciprocal disciplinary agreement with the HFA.
(ii) Local District Associations will automatically be affiliated to the HSFA and to the ESFA which comply with the ESFA’s Child Welfare regulations.
(iii) Schools and colleges will automatically be affiliated to the HSFA. They must also affiliate to their Local District Schools’ Football Association where one catering for the age group(s) of their pupils exists. Failure to do this would invalidate their HSFA & ESFA.
(iv) Where no Local Schools’ Football Association is in existence and it is not practical for one to be formed, individual schools will be allowed to seek affiliated membership to the HSFA for a period of no longer than one season, during which time affiliation to a Local Association should be arranged. The period of one year may only be extended with the approval of the Executive Committee, who will review the situation annually.
(v) Membership of the HSFA requires all schools and colleges to nominate players of potential county standard, and those already recognised by county managers, to trial for the HSFA’s Representative Teams. Schools and colleges accept that, through their membership, the HSFA takes priority over individual school games. Schools and colleges must encourage players to represent the HSFA and cannot withdraw or discourage players from playing in any HSFA Representative fixture. Schools and colleges which are found to have discouraged player participation in any HSFA Representative teams will have their membership of the HSFA ended with immediate effect and all teams removed from competitions offered by the HSFA.
(vi) Life Membership. A member of the Executive Committee who has served as President, Chairman, Vice-Chairman, General Secretary, Competitions Secretary, Treasurer or Primary Schools’ Representative shall be awarded Life Membership on retirement from the Executive Committee. Nominations for Life Membership may also be submitted by member Associations in respect of a person who has given outstanding service at local, county and/or regional level leading to national level. Any submission must be received by the President on or before 31 January in any playing season, for consideration by the Executive Committee at its next meeting.
(vii) Honorary Life Members. Honorary Life Membership of the Association may be conferred upon individuals, who are not members of a Local or County Association, who have served the Association with distinction and credit. Such nominations will be sanctioned and approved by the Executive Committee.
(viii) Local Football Co-ordinators. Local Football Co-ordinators are individuals operating on behalf of a local geographic area, as a proxy for an informal district. This role will be allowed to seek affiliated membership to the HSFA for a period no longer than one season, during which time affiliation to a Local Football Organiser should be arranged. The period of one year may only be extended with the approval of the Executive Committee, who will review the situation annually.
(b) MEMBERSHIP PROCEDURES
In applying for membership of the HSFA a formal DSFA or LFO must satisfy the Executive Committee that:
(i) It is properly constituted
(ii) It is playing football according to the laws of the game of the International Football Association Board and that it has sufficient controls in place to ensure that its respective membership does the same
(iii) It and its members agree to abide by the Rules of the Association
(iv) It has in place arrangements to elect a governing committee via the AGM, and provide the ESFA with AGM minutes and accounts
(v) It has its own bank account and will use the funds provided by the ESFA to assist the national Association’s charitable objects.
(b) (i) CONFIRMING MEMBERSHIP
In confirming its membership, the formal DSFA or LFO must:
(i) Agree between the ESFA Council and the HSFA its boundaries, and not extend beyond those boundaries without the express permission of the ESFA Council to formulate coherent coverage of locally organised football, and for the organisation of representative football at local level
(ii) Accept into its membership any school, including special schools, within those defined boundaries
(iii) Provide football for all age groups.
(iv) Not administer competitions involving schools outside their own area without prior approval of the ESFA Council and the HSFA.
(v) Permit cross-border inter-schools competitions only with the agreement of all affected parties
(vi) Ensure that there are arrangements in place to prevent unsanctioned football from taking place, and to apply for such sanction in accordance with ESFA policy, as updated from time to time
(vii) Ensure that players, members and officials are allowed to take part in schools’ football only on condition that they observe the rules of the ESFA as well as the rules, regulations and bye laws of the FA
(viii) Observe and enforce such rules
(ix) Submit, or contribute to, a County data return on an annual basis confirming schools and association membership in the area.
(b) (ii) MANAGING THE REPRESENTATIVE GAME
In managing the representative game as a condition of membership, the formal DSFA or LFO must:
(i) Have a named welfare officer who is fully compliant with FA and ESFA regulations
(ii) Ensure that only players attending school within the relevant boundary (District) are selected for that area’s representative team.
(iii) Ensure that district representative teams confirm their entry to the HSFA competitions prior to approving cross-boundary activity.
(c) VOTING POWERS
All Member schools and colleges shall be granted 1 vote.
(d) MEMBERSHIP FEES
All Membership Fees shall be determined annually by the Executive Committee and notified to all schools and colleges by 1st May for the following season.
(e) COMPETITION FEES
All Competition Fees shall be determined annually by the Executive Committee and notified to all schools and colleges by 1st May for the following season.
4. CONSTITUTION OF ASSOCIATIONS
(a) Before being accepted as a member all Local District Associations must satisfy the Executive Committee that they are properly constituted Associations, are playing football according to the Laws of the Game of the International Football Association Board, provide the General Secretary with a return, where necessary, setting forth the schools in its membership, and must complete the annual ESFA/FA Audit Form, as instructed, at least seven days before the deadline date.
(b) The HSFA shall have the right to refuse to accept the affiliation of any new Association which covers any part of the same areas as that of an Association already affiliated.
(c) No existing Association shall be allowed to extend further into an area covered by another Association without the express permission of the Executive Committee.
(d) All member Local Associations must agree to abide by the Rules of the ESFA & HSFA.
(e) An member Local Association shall be governed by regularly elected Officers and Management Committee – the election of such to take place at its Annual General Meeting convened for that purpose.
(f) A member Local Association should have its own Banking Account. Its funds may be used to assist charitable objects or institutions, but shall not be employed to promote the interest of any political or religious organisation.
(g) A section of a member Local Association, with specific responsibilities for football, may be accepted into affiliated membership with the HSFA, subject to it having no geographical conflict with existing member Local Associations and fully recognising the HSFA as its regulatory body in all matters appertaining to schools’ football.
(h) No member Local Association, or school affiliated to that member Association shall compete in any competition which is not recognised and registered by the HSFA, or play against any non-member association, or team, without the sanction of the ESFA.
(i) Member District Associations shall not administer competitions involving schools or Associations outside their own area without prior sanction of the HSFA.
(j) Member Local District Associations may sanction the participation of school children of both sexes in matches under their control, where the match restricts players to those under 18 years of age at midnight between 31st August and 1st September in any playing season.
(k) A member Local Association shall, on request, accept as a member any school or college with full time pupils, and within its geographical area.
(l) Schools and Colleges in membership with the HSFA must seek permission from the ESFA to participate in non-ESFA activities.
(m) All member Local Associations that run representative teams MUST have a named welfare officer who is fully compliant with The Football Association’s, and the ESFA’s, welfare officer requirements.
(n) All member Local Associations MUST have their own recognised Executive Committee made up of more than two individuals. No individual may take on more than two roles within the Executive Committee.
(o) Teachers shall abide by the bye-laws laid down by charity trustees from time to time with regard to eligibility, disqualification and association with professional clubs
5. CONSTITUTION OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
(a) Size of Council
(i) The Executive Committee of the HSFA will be elected annually (see (g) below) and consist of no less than 7 members, with additional members representing each of the Local District Associations, as defined by the Executive Committee.
(ii) If, at the time of election, there are insufficient nominations in any Local District Association for it to fulfil its complement of Executive Committee Members, the Executive Committee shall have the power, at the earliest opportunity, to fill the vacancy (in accordance with (b) below) or proceed with all duties until the time of the next annual election.
(iii) In addition, the Executive Committee shall have the power to appoint annually to its membership, a representative of the ESFA or HFA.
(b) Eligibility of Executive Committee Members
Members of the Executive Committee shall meet one of these following criteria. (Note: The criteria are set out in order of precedence for election purposes so that a nominee that meets criterion 1 will always be elected before a nominee in criterion 2 and so on)
(i) Teachers in establishments affiliated to the HSFA in the Local District Association which they serve or serving teachers resident in Hertfordshire.
(ii) Teachers who have retired from working in an educational capacity, in Hertfordshire, for no more than 3 years or such retired teachers who are resident in Hertfordshire.
(iii) Teachers who have been retired for more than 3 years and are resident in Hertfordshire and are approved by the Executive Committee.
(c) Chairman and Vice-Chairman
The Executive Committee shall elect, in May, a Chairman and a Vice-Chairman, from the members of the Executive Committee, for the following academic year and shall announce these elections at the AGM in June.
(d) Officers of the Association
The Officers of the Association shall be
(i) The President
(ii) The Vice-President
(iii) The Chairman
(iv) The Vice-Chairman
(v) The General Secretary
(vi) The Treasurer
(vii) The Primary Schools’ Secretary
(viii) The Competitions Secretary
The Chairman, Vice-Chairman and General Secretary shall together be empowered to act on behalf of the association in matters of urgency.
(i) On receiving formal notice that an elected member of the Executive Committee intends to retire, the General Secretary shall notify membership and invite nominations for the vacancy by a date specified by the Executive Committee.
(ii) Nominations to oppose an elected Member of Council for the following season shall be sent to the Chairman by April 1st. Membership will be advised by the General Secretary that the sitting member is being opposed, and that any additional nominations will be accepted up to May 1st.
An individual who is retained in an advisory or paid capacity by a Football Club which employs contracted players shall be disqualified from membership of the Executive Committee.
6. ELECTION OF COUNCIL MEMBERS
(a) If an election is necessary, every affiliated school and college in full membership in Hertfordshire will receive voting powers in accordance with General Rule 3.
(b) When there are more than two candidates for any seat on the Executive Committee, the system of “Preferential Voting” shall be adopted, and the Association shall vote for the candidates in order of preference.
(c) If an election result is a tie, the names of the candidates heading the poll at the final count shall be re-submitted to the Region for a further postal vote which shall be dealt with by a duly appointed panel of scrutineers and the result declared.
(d) If a vacancy on the Executive Committee occurs and no nominations are received to fill that vacancy, then the Executive Committee may co-opt a teacher or former teacher resident in the area to represent the Executive Committee for that season, after which the vacancy will be re-advertised.
7. COUNCIL MEETING (Quorum, Committees, Powers)
For the transaction of business as at an Executive Committee Meeting, four members shall form a quorum. The Executive Committee may, appoint such Committees or Commissions as it may consider necessary, delegate all or any of the powers to any such Committee or Commission of the Executive Committee and make any such regulations for the control of the Association and the game as from time to time may be necessary.
(i) All sub-committees will be elected from within the Executive Committee.
(ii) All sub-committees, subject to the permission of Executive Committee, may co-opt.
(iii) Quorums for sub-committees shall be established by the Executive Committee.
The findings of all Commissions set up by the Executive Committee shall be binding on all parties concerned, subject to the right of Appeal when the findings of an HSFA Appeals Board shall be binding on all parties concerned. Costs or part costs of a Commission or Appeal may be a charge on any school, college, Local Association, or individual (other than a player) involved.
7A. Further Powers
In furtherance of the charitable objects but not further or otherwise the Council shall have the following additional powers:
(a) to appeal for and accept donations, subscriptions, covenants, sponsorships and legacies to be held on trust for the purposes of the Association or any of them provided that the Executive Committee shall not undertake any permanent trading activities in raising funds for the charitable objects hereof.
(b) to make regulations for the management of the Association and for the conduct of the business of the Executive Committee and from time to time to amend such regulations.
(c) to employ any person, firm or company not being a member of the Executive Committee to manage or assist in managing the day to day running of the affairs of the Association upon such reasonable terms as the Executive Committee thinks fit.
(d) to arrange for the accounts of the Association to be audited annually by a qualified accountant at the expense of the Association.
(e) to implement decisions of the Executive Committee reached informally provided that such decisions are ratified at the next or subsequent meeting of the Executive Committee.
(f) to do all such lawful acts or things as shall further the attainment of the objects of the Association and so far as may be necessary to do such acts or things in collaboration with any person, body, institution, authority, or otherwise provided that no part of the assets of the Association shall be used or applied for a non-charitable purpose.
(g) when making grants of any funds to any charitable organisation or charitable institution to accept as a good discharge in respect of any such funds the receipt of the Treasurer or General Secretary or another authorised officer for the time being of such charitable organisation or charitable institution.
(h) in respect of any property subject to the trusts here-of to vest the same in any corporation or any other person or persons being at least two in number (whether or not including one or more of the Council) as nominee or nominees for the Council.
(i) subject to the prior written approval in writing of the Charity Commissioners for England and Wales to alter the name of the Association by deed.
(j) to commission, promote. publish. distribute and sell books, plans, pamphlets, facsimiles, photographs, models and other publications of every description provided that the same are in support and furtherance of the objects of the Association.
7B. Power to Wind Up the Association
If at any time the Executive Committee is of the opinion that the purpose of the Association can no longer be effectively carried out by them they shall wind up the Association and after discharging the debts of the Association out of its assets the Executive Committee shall transfer the remainder of the assets to such other charitable body or bodies having objects the same as or similar to the Association in such proportions and on such terms as the Executive Committee shall in their absolute discretion decide.
8. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING, AND SPECIAL GENERAL MEETINGS
(a) The AGM of the HSFA shall be held during the month of June. The Financial Year shall end on the 31st of March. The General Secretary shall give twenty-eight days’ clear notice to all affiliated schools and colleges of the place, the day, and the hour of such meeting. An Agenda specifying the nature of the business to be transacted at that meeting, and printed abstract of the prepared Accounts of the Association, covering all matches and activities for which the Executive Committee is responsible, shall accompany the notice.
(b) Notice of any business (other than the declaration of the result of the election of the Executive Committee, consideration of the Accounts and Balance Sheet, and the Reports of the Executive Committee, and not being such as requires a special resolution) to be submitted at the Annual General Meeting, shall be given to the General Secretary on or before May 1st. First amendments to motions must be received by the General Secretary not less than fourteen days before the Annual General Meeting. Proposed changes to rules and resolutions must be supported in writing by at least one other affiliated school or college.
(c) Schools and colleges will be required to send a delegate to the AGM who must confirm their attendance by signing the official Attendance Sheet.
(d) The Executive Committee shall have power at any time to convene a Special General Meeting. The Chairman must convene a Special General Meeting at any time on receiving a requisition stating the objects of the Meeting and signed by representatives of not less than THIRTY affiliated schools or colleges in full membership, but no such resolution shall be accepted in order to reverse a decision taken at a properly convened AGM or Special General Meeting held within the last twelve months. An agenda of the business to be transacted at any such Special General Meeting shall accompany the notice convening the Meeting.
(e) At a General Meeting, the voting power shall be vested in the Members of the Executive Committee together with representatives from affiliated Associations in accordance with Rule 3 (b) Representatives from thirty Member schools/colleges shall form a quorum. A school/college delegate can only vote for his own school/college. An Executive Committee Member may use his own vote, plus his/her school/college vote if he is representing a school/college.
(f) Participation in any HSFA competition, other than those organised by the Wix Committee, is subject to full attendance at the Annual General Meeting.
9. INTERNATIONAL MATCHES
(a) The ESFA shall have the power to arrange International Matches, and shall, subject to the permission of the Head Teacher, have the first claim upon the services of any player selected to play in any matches arranged by the Council.
(b) Players selected for International Matches shall not take part in any game during the three days prior to and including the day of assembly of the team for the match i.e. when the team assembles on a Friday, a player may not play after the preceding Tuesday.
(c) The expenses of one representative from each school/college, which has a player taking part in Home International Matches, shall be defrayed on one occasion during the season in order that the school/college may be represented.
10. INTER-COUNTY MATCHES
(a) The HSFA shall have the power to arrange Inter-County Matches, and shall have the first claim upon the services of any player selected to play in any matches arranged by the Fixture Secretary.
(b) Players selected for Inter-County Matches shall not take part in any game during the 24 hours prior to and including the day of assembly of the team for the match, i.e. when the team assembles on a Saturday, a player may not play after the preceding Thursday.
11. TEACHERS, PLAYERS AND FOOTBALL CLUBS EMPLOYING CONTRACT PLAYERS
(i) Any Teacher, Ex-Teacher or Official of a school or college making or aiding in making an approach to a player, which offers a contract of employment or recognised trial period on behalf of a Football Club which employs Contract Players, shall be disqualified from Membership of the Hertfordshire Schools’ Football Association.
(ii) Teachers are permitted to take part in the activities at Centres of Excellence and Academies which have been properly licensed.
(i) Whilst a student is receiving full-time education in accordance with the Education Acts, priority must be given to school or schools’ organisations activities in accordance with FA regulations governing players registered within the Programme for Excellence.
(ii) Players who are under six years of age on 1st September in any playing season shall not be allowed to participate in competitions sanctioned by the ESFA. A child who has not attained the age of ten years at midnight between 31 August and 1 September shall not play, and shall not be permitted or encouraged to play in a match between sides of more than seven players in that playing season.
(iii) A boy in the age ranges Under 7, Under 8, Under 9, Under 10, Under 11, Under 12, Under 13, Under 14 and Under 15 must not play, and shall not be permitted or encouraged to play in a match where any other player is older or younger by one school year, but no more than two, or more than that child.
iv) A boy in the age range Under 16 shall be permitted to play in a match where any other player is older by more than one school year or more than that child.
v) A girl in the age ranges Under 7, Under 8, Under 9, Under 10 and Under 11, must not play, and shall not be permitted or encouraged to play in a match where any other player is older or younger by one school year or more than that child.
vi) A girl in the age ranges Under 12, Under 13, Under 14 and Under 16 shall be permitted to play in a match where any other player is older or younger by one school year, but no more than two, or more than that child.
(vii) Any player who attends a Club for training or coaching or who plays for that Club, must be registered at a Football Academy or at a licensed Centre of Excellence operated by the Club. The registration of a player shall be governed by the Academy or Centre of Excellence Regulations of The Football Association.
(viii) A player who is on the roll of a recognised School, Sixth Form College, Tertiary or Further Education College, other than as a day release Student, shall not enter into a Contract of Employment with a Club in Membership with The Football Association or an affiliated Association, but may be registered within The Football Association’s Programme for Excellence.
(ix) A player who signs as a Trainee is no longer eligible to play in Schools’ Football.
(x) A player may be suspended from taking part in any game under the auspices of the ESFA or its affiliated Associations immediately he commits an offence to any one of sections (iv), (v), and (vii) as outlined above in this rule. It shall be the duty of the local Association to which his school is affiliated to notify the school concerned of such suspension. The Council of the ESFA shall investigate the offence and determine the period of suspension.
(xi) Players registered to do so may attend Centres of Excellence and Academies established by Clubs. Such attendance must comply with the rules laid down for such Centres and Academies.
12. PENALTIES FOR BREACH OF ESFA, FA RULES
Players and officials are allowed to take part in Schools’ Football on condition that they observe the rules of the ESFA, HSFA and the relevant Rules, Regulations and Bye-Laws of The Football Associations Ltd, and every affiliated schools/college is required to observe and enforce such Rules, Regulations and Bye-Laws. Any school/college not carrying out this duty shall be liable to disaffiliation by the Executive Committee of the HSFA and any officials or players guilty of any breach of such Rules, Regulations and Bye-laws may also be suspended or disqualified. Any appeal against the decision of the ESFA Council and HSFA Executive Committee shall be made in writing to The Football Association and shall be governed by the rules of The Football Association (Note: this does not apply to competitions organised by the HSFA).
13. ALTERATION TO RULES
These Rules may be altered at the Annual General Meeting. Notice of motion for alteration must be sent to the General Secretary as set out in Rule 8b and a copy of alterations or additions shall be sent to each affiliated Association in accordance with Rule 8a. These Rules may also be altered at a Special General Meeting convened for that purpose. Notice of the Meeting and suggested alterations must be sent by the Chief Executive to each affiliated school/college at least twenty-eight days before the Meeting in accordance with Rule 8a.
14. ESFA SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN POLICY
The HSFA recognises its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all children and young people by protecting them from physical, sexual or emotional harm and from neglect or bullying. It is determined to meet its obligations to ensure that those schools and colleges providing football opportunities for children and young people do so to the highest possible standard of care.
Every child or young person (defined as any person under the age of 18) who plays or participates in football should be able to take part in an enjoyable and safe environment and be protected from abuse. This is the responsibility of every adult involved in football.
The HSFA is committed to working to provide a safe environment for all children and young people to participate in the sport to the best of their abilities for as long as they choose to do so.
The Safeguarding Children Policy is supported by The FA’s Respect Programme to address verbal abuse and bullying of youngsters by parents and coaches on the sidelines. The Association’s Safeguarding Children Policy principles 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, faith or sexual orientation;
>> 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 and Carers is essential
The HSFA is committed to working in partnership with the LEA, Police, Children’s Services Departments, Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards (LSCB) and the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) in accordance with their procedures. This is essential to enable these organisations to carry out their statutory duties to investigate concerns and protect all children and young people.
The HSFA shall uphold the ESFA’s Safeguarding Children Policy. The ESFA’s Safeguarding Children Policy is in response to government legislation and guidance, developed to safeguard the welfare and development of children and young people.
All affiliated schools and colleges are required to endorse and adhere to the ESFA’s Safeguarding Children Policy
All Local Association Welfare Officers are expected to abide by the Code of Conduct for volunteer Welfare Officers.
All member schools and colleges must make their facilities available to the HSFA should these be requested by the Executive Committee.