School Club Links

The School Club Links programme runs every season with the objective of encouraging children to move from playing casual/school football to a local affiliated FA Charter Standard Club.

The programme is designed to build sustainable partnerships between schools and clubs where they do not currently exist. This will help to achieve the overall aim of creating teams and recruiting players for clubs whilst ensuring extracurricular activities for schools.  The Sheffield & Hallamshire County FA development team select a number of school club links per season.

What are the projects aims?
  • Increased opportunities for both players and volunteers.
  • Individual and community wide health benefits.
  • Improved retention in football beyond / outside of school, through positive experience.
  • Improved performance levels.
  • Extended opportunities for socialisation, self development and teamwork.
  • Raise school/club profile within community.
  • Increased membership and volunteer base.
Who is the target group?

Young people aged 5-16 years of age Children who want to join a football team Players who may be less likely to be participating in football for their schools Areas with more limited opportunities Why create links with schools?

Access to facilities

Recruitment of new players Gain better understanding of your players Better use of equipment Share skills and expertise Help retain players at your club Support the school to deliver curriculum More chance to work with your players Help schools promote healthy, active lifestyle What is involved in an school club links programme?  The programme involves structured activity over a period of 4-8 weeks. This will be delivered by an FA qualified coach from the club or County FA (funding permitting) who must be FA CRB checked. The structure of the delivery is flexible and should be mutually arranged and agreed by the club and the schools involved. 

Clubs with a shortage of players or looking to recruit at a specific age group are encouraged to approach schools with this in mind. E.g. creating an U7 team you should target school Year 1 pupils or recruiting additional U15 players you should target school Year 9 pupils.

All successful clubs will be asked to complete a written agreement with all the schools they work with. This will help clubs create more formal links and allow both parties to understand exactly what is being asked of them throughout the programme.

Monitoring and Evaluation 

There will be a small amount of monitoring and evaluation to be completed so the FA can evaluate the effectiveness of the programme and collate the School Club links figures nationally. This document will be distributed to all clubs involved in the programme once all of their school coaching sessions have finished.

If you would like further information on the FA School Club Links Programme please contact Eva Egginton for female football on 0114 261 5500 or via email at or Mark Wozniak for male football on 0114 261 5500 or via email on

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