BFA backs down on coaching punishment
Clubs will not have points deducted this season by the Bermuda Football Association for failing to have coaches with the necessary coaching qualifications.
The deadline for compliance has been extended to January 31, 2019 after a Special Congress meeting with the clubs last week when they voted to extend the deadline until the new year.
Eleven clubs faced having fines imposed or points deducted for not having coaches with the required qualifications by the original August 31 deadline.
However, after a second meeting with the club presidents, the teams voted to delay the sanctions. BFA general secretary David Sabir refused to identify the clubs concerned and was also unmoved when contacted by The Royal Gazette last night on sanctions, if any, that might be enforced if the new deadline is not adhered to.
Two presidents, Jason Wade of Southampton Rangers and Sherwin Dill of North Village, who were vocal on the BFA’s plans to impose the sanctions during the Congress meeting, applauded the latest move by the association.
“The presidents have wholeheartedly accepted the administrative failure within our clubs,” Wade said in a statement released by the BFA yesterday.
“We are grateful to the BFA Executive Council who have facilitated the Special Congress where we ratified the proposal to provide more time for compliance and ensure that matches are decided on the field.”
Dill also welcomed the decision to give clubs more time to become compliant.
“The improvement of coaching standards is paramount in raising the standards of football in Bermuda,” said the Village president. “The additional time will ensure clubs can work together to become compliant and ensure the players are not adversely affected.”
Dill admitted yesterday that his club was one of those facing sanctions.
“We were sanctioned and we have taken every step to become fully certified,” Dill said. “Just to have the coaching certification was not sufficient; you also had to have the Scars certification and CPR certification, all in place by August 31.
“Last Thursday, we had 14 coaches who were certified for CPR and we’re willing to assist any of the other clubs. We’re all working together to get to the point where we feel it is going to be best for football in Bermuda.”
The clubs called an emergency meeting a week after the Congress meeting, after president Mark Wade vowed that the BFA would go ahead with the sanctions.
“The meeting was very well attended, 19 clubs were in attendance,” Dill said. “The general agreement is that all clubs will pursue with due diligence to become compliant. We’re going to be assisting each other collectively to get to that stage.”
The BFA introduced the Coach Licensing Initiative in March 2016, which came into effect after the August 31, 2018 deadline. The policy stipulates that all coaches must obtain the BFA coaching licence by no later than August 31. The coaching licence is required for children (7-11), youth (13-17) and senior football.
During the Congress meeting the Coach Licensing Policy was addressed and a motion from the floor by Wade to reconsider the sanctions applicable for non-compliance was defeated by the clubs with no further motions put forward.
“As a result, the sanctions, inclusive of match forfeitures, where then communicated to the non-compliant clubs,” the BFA said in the statement.
“A few days later following the Annual Congress meeting, representatives from the BFA Executive Council were invited to a club presidents meeting to receive a proposal from the club presidents.
“Two presidents representing the clubs also attended a special BFA Executive Council meeting to further discuss the proposal. The proposal did not alter the policy but provides additional time for the affected clubs to become compliant with the Coach Licensing requirements.
“Subsequently, a special Congress meeting was organised to allow the clubs to consider and vote upon the proposal.
“As a result, the clubs voted to delay becoming compliant with the Coaching Licensing requirements until January 31, 2019.
“Additionally, there will be no match forfeitures for the 2018-2019 season.”
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