The aim of the Hampshire Squash, Squash In Schools programme is to facilitate the promotion and growth of squash at the grass roots level. The Hampshire squash objective is to assist as many coaches as possible to work in as many schools as possible to assist as many children as possible to transition to actively play Squash on squash courts throughout the county.
Hampshire squash have a Schools development report published in Jan 2016 which can be found using the following URL, please paste it into your browse to understand the county squash in school objectives, potential squash in school offerings, types of squash in school costs and squash in school funding opportunities. The development report also outlines squash in school growth strategies, types of squash in school equipment requirements and the type of governance needed.
It is now 2 1/2 years since this report and a lot of valuable information has been acquired and is now being learned from. The constructive feedback is being analysed and reviewed and overall good progress has been made. The good news is that there is a demand for squash in schools and the challenges are much better understood than they were.
Squash in school Programmes have been active for years in Hampshire but with a relatively low profile and with a relatively low number of schools participating. The programme since 2016 has been about about growth and development. It has been about trawling for knowledge and sharing it. Since 2016 around 12 or so new schools have been introduced to squash and an existing 8 or so schools have continued to be engaged with the sport.
The Hampshire Squash focus has initially been on the Squash in schools festival format. This format was reused from the Mike Phillips programme in Chichester and using marketing acquired from regional work. Hampshire squash has benefited greatly from synergies derived from sharing information and cross regional work. Squash festival semi finals and finals are fantastic days with some tremendous feedback from schools, teachers and parents involved. The festival format is a winner and will continue. Great thanks go to all those coaches involved and Brian Ward in particular who has really kept the concept going through 2017 and 2018. Evidence of these successes can be seen on the Hampshire squash facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/hampshiresquash/
Planning is underway to tap into new markets around Hampshire. The last 2 years have seen Hampshire Squash efforts focused on approaching schools in the Eastleigh, Southampton, Basingstoke and Winchester areas. It is hoped that these efforts will be sustained. Hampshire squash have 'landed and expanded' here. Portsmouth, Romsey, Isle Of Wight and New Forest are the current new targets for squash in schools in 2018/19. It is also hoped schools development work will occur in Fareham, Gosport and Havant and Waterlooville. With more schools learning squash and racket skills this opens up the opportunity for more inter- school matches and activities across the county.
Funding for schools projects is available either directly through the schools themselves or through the sporting arm of Hampshire County Council; Energise Me. The fostering of great relationships between Energise Me, Hampshire Squash, the schools games organisers, county council and district councils, the coaches and clubs is key to the future growth in participation levels and therefore performance levels. Great communication from Hampshire squash to the schools about its coaches ability to deliver squash and PE skills to classes of 30 in primary schools and secondary schools is imperative. The right training and education for the coaches is also critical.
England Squash have helped fund a coaching initiative in Hampshire to demonstrate how Hampshire Squash can deliver squash in schools at scale on a termly basis to all age groups. A series of workshops are being set up, the first of which are at Romsey and Portsmouth on the 21st and 22nd May. Longer term Hampshire squash will need to fill a full time Coaching development role to lead and drive amongst other things, the growth and development of squash through the schools and clubs.
Hampshire Junior Squash can deliver a number of options: (These are under review pending the Chris Vine Workshops in May 2018.
1) Schools Squash Festival (6 week programme based in the school and at a local club) –
Currently HJS have run a number of festivals across schools and this involves work in school for 3 weeks and at a local club for 3 weeks. This involves up to 30 children from Y5 and Y6 classes where Hampshire squash supply the coach and resources to enable the children to experience squash, many for the first time. It concentrates on the ABC (Agility, Balance, Co-ordination) basics as well and basic hand/racket/ball skills and the discipline of playing in a squash court. Overall emphasis is on fun and control and the cost per class of 30 is £200 total.
2) Single School squash sessions (6 week programme based in the school and at a local club) -
The School Festival programme can be designed for one school on 2 or 3 classes involved and up to 30 children per class with a competition between 6 teams of 5 children each.
3) Introduction of school squash (coach takes over a PE lesson for an agreed number of sessions)
HJS can offer to supply a coach and resources to come into schools and deliver 6 weekly squash introduction lessons to a class generally of Y5 or Y6 during the term time sport lesson. This can cover several class sessions by discussion and each session would be arranged for a cost of £25 - £35 per hour in school.
4) Introduction of squash to Y1 – Y4 as well as Y5 and Y6, including development of a rolling annual programme
Hampshire Squash can arrange for a coach to visit the school and introduce squash to Y1 – Y4 classes with the assistance of a Teacher or TA. This will be run on the lines of ABC exercises along with an introduction to basic racket skills. Ideally this is a repeating arrangement for each year and the drills and exercises can be increased depending on year group and previous skills.
5) Supply of a coach and resource to School Sports day -
Hampshire Squash can arrange for a coach and resources to visit your school and set up and introduce squash during a school sports day, ideally this is done in a sport hall or similar but can be delivered outside depending upon the weather.
6) Promotion of club taster days to a range of schools specifically designed to bring new children into squash -
Hampshire Squash will act as an interface between schools and squash clubs with junior sessions to attract more juniors into squash. Squash clubs will set up specific open days for a single or multiple schools to visit and have an interactive session with both ABC exercises and basic squash skills all delivered by an experienced Squash coach.
7) Introduction of Squash to other groups such as Guides and Scouts
HJS can link up schools and local junior groups such as Guides, Scouts to work with a number of juniors across a range of groups within a local squash club.
8) Adapting school Walls bars to enable squash to be played in the hall.
HJS can demonstrate and facilitate using standard exercise wall bars as a court environment for schools to deliver sessions internally. HJS can even discuss with each school the viability of building an outdoor squash area that can be converted from current space into a mini squash court.
Hampshire Squash Contacts.
Charles Black - Hampshire Chairman - Charles Black - firstname.lastname@example.org
Andrew Flett - Junior Chairman - email@example.com
Trevor Leahy - Schools Lead - Trevor.firstname.lastname@example.org
Brian Ward - Delivery Executive Coach - Southampton, North Eastleigh & Winchester - BPWard@hotmail.co.uk
Francesca Whyte - Delivery Executive Coach - Romsey - email@example.com
Brian Robertson - Delivery Executive Coach - Portsmouth - firstname.lastname@example.org
Sarah Spacey - Delivery Executive Coach - Portsmouth - email@example.com
Edd Pooley - Delivery Executive Coach - New Forest - firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Jonathan Graham - (provisional rep for North East Hampshire) - firstname.lastname@example.org
Adam Dominey - Delivery Executive Coach - Isle Of Wight - email@example.com
Peter Johnson - Delivery Executive Coach - Isle of Wight - firstname.lastname@example.org
Further resources including detailed programmes for primary and secondary schools can be identified using the following URL in a browser. https://1drv.ms/f/s!AqvY5iYoUCPpgiAs5M0070SBia3m