Scottish Rugby Honours Svq Graduates
Scottish Rugby honoured 17 of its community coach apprentices at a graduation ceremony at Murrayfield on Friday (24 September). The occasion was lead by Scotland head coach Andy Robinson and Keith Brown, Minister for Skills and Life Long Learning, which commended the graduates for achieving a Level 2 SVQ in Coaching, Teaching & Instructing Rugby Union, in addition to a number of industry specific awards within coaching, refereeing, first aid and assessing. Their input and enthusiasm towards rugby development within their own communities has involved pro-active and extended rugby development to approximately 400 primary schools and 100 secondary schools across the country in the past year.Scottish Rugby honoured 17 of its community coach apprentices at a graduation ceremony at Murrayfield on Friday (24 September). The occasion was lead by Scotland head coach Andy Robinson and Keith Brown, Minister for Skills and Life Long Learning, which commended the graduates for achieving a Level 2 SVQ in Coaching, Teaching & Instructing Rugby Union, in addition to a number of industry specific awards within coaching, refereeing, first aid and assessing. Their input and enthusiasm towards rugby development within their own communities has involved pro-active and extended rugby development to approximately 400 primary schools and 100 secondary schools across the country in the past year. Alongside classroom based study, the apprentices, sponsored by rugby clubs and local authorities, work in tandem with Scottish Rugby’s regional development network and have graduated with a Scottish Modern Apprenticeship. Their contribution to the development network in delivering the opportunity to experience rugby and become physically active to thousands of Scottish schoolchildren on a weekly basis, regardless of where they live, was lauded at the ceremony by Robinson. He said: Each of the candidates has been supported throughout their vocation by their hometown clubs and, in many cases, their local authorities. These groups must also be applauded for helping to support grassroots rugby within their own communities offering rugby to all children as an acceptable and positive sporting option. Since its inception eight years ago, the scheme has been a nationally-acclaimed success, contributing to the development feat of growing the Scottish rugby player base by 50% in the last four years. Robinson added: The programme exemplifies the way forward if we are to bring new recruits to rugby, irrespective of their background and, at the same time, encourage greater physical activity for young people in Scotland. Congratulations to the graduates and everyone involved in giving these young people the chance to flourish. Keith Brown, Minister for Skills and Life Long Learning, said: The Modern Apprenticeship programme is a genuine success story for Scotland and one of the reasons for that is that organisations outwith the traditional industries are taking part. I had the opportunity to visit Murrayfield earlier this year to meet some of the apprentices taking part in the Scottish Rugby training programme. I was very impressed with what I saw – the commitment of the organisation and of the individuals I met was clear to see. I would like to extend my congratulations to the community coach apprentices who have been honoured by Scottish Rugby and wish them good luck with their future careers.- SECOND YEAR GRADUATES -James Bird (Dunfermline RFC) – David is studying a BSc in Sport and Exercise at Abertay University Euan Bonner (BATS) – Euan has successfully applied to study an HND in Sports Coaching at Telford College Mark Christie (Falkirk Council) – Mark has successfully applied to study an HND in Sports Coaching at Forth College Hani Darwish (Biggar) – Hani is now coaching Biggar rugby club Thomas Davidson (Cartha) – Thomas has successfully applied to study an HND Sports Coaching at Cardonald College Jack Forrester (Lasswade) – Jack is coaching in Midlothian John Hall (Stobswell) – John is travelling and playing rugby in Australia Cairstiona Hawthorn (Perthshire) – Cairstiona is studying an HNC at Perth College with a view to becoming a physiotherapist Jordan Kingston (Dundee Eagles) – Jordan is now in Dundee Ross Kinnear (Bannockburn/Stirling County) – Ross is studying an HND Sports Coaching in Forth College Ross Manson (City of Edinburgh) – Ross is now a sessional coach for Edinburgh City Council Gregor Manson (Clackmannanshire Council) – Gregor is coaching at Hillfoots Hamish Munro (Portobello) – Hamish is now the competitions administrator at Scottish Rugby James Sadio (Mackie) – James has been appointed as Mackie rugby club development officer Craig Shearer (Dundee Eagles) – is studying an HNC in Physical Education and Sports Studies at Dundee College Graeme Simpson (Clackmannanshire Council) – Graeme is now an assistant rugby coach for Clackmannanshire Council Michael-James Starkey (Clydebank) – Michael-James is now coaching at Clydebank rugby club Colin Sturgeon (Carrick/Girvan/Ayr) – Colin has a secured a coaching role at AyrIn 2002 the Community Coach programme was launched by Scottish Rugby and it has continued to develop and flourish. The programme promotes exceptionally high standards of achievement which have been adopted and exemplified by the graduates who were honoured last night. Since 2002, over 80 clubs have sponsored at least one candidate onto the programmeThe SVQ programme – To date more than 400 candidates have successfully completed at least one year on the programme – The programme has won national recognition in two successive years at the Scottish Modern Apprenticeship Awards winning the Partnership category in 2004 and the Employee Achievement category in 2005 GROWING THE GAME Scottish Rugby has surpassed its strategic target to grow its playing base by over 50%, two years ahead of schedule, pointing to the steady recovery of extra-curricular state school rugby as key to the sport’s consistently increasing popularity. The number of schools regularly playing the game rise from 184 in 2008 to over 240 in 2010, thanks in part to a successful state school specific programme ran in partnership with the Scottish Widows Bank which rewards and supports school staff who give up their time to take extra-curricular rugby while providing increasing amounts of free training kit to the school as the sport develops. The burgeoning uptake in state schools, particularly S1-S3, is crucial to the rise in the number of people playing the game at all levels where there are now 25,000 under 18 players playing regular rugby compared to 15,000 just four years ago.