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ESFA SGM Minutes

MINUTES OF THE SPECIAL GENERAL MEETING
HELD AT THE WESLEY HOTEL, EUSTON, LONDON
ON SATURDAY 10 SEPTEMBER 2016

The meeting opened at 12.00 noon with M Spinks in the Chair. The full list of those present is attached to the Minutes as Appendix I.

The Chairman opened the meeting by welcoming delegate to London.

1NOTICE OF THE MEETING

The Chairman read the Notice of the Meeting

2STANDING ORDERS

The Vice-Chairman, Alan Johnston moved the adoption of Standing Orders as printed on the Agenda Paper. This was agreed by the Meeting

3 SCRUTINEERS

Four Scrutineers were appointed: Allan Reed (Washington PSFA), Steve Abson (Leicestershire & Midland Counties), Tony Williams (Wiltshire CSFA), Hefin Roberts (Cheshire CSFA)

4 MOTIONS

Rule 3 Membership, Voting Powers and Affiliation Fees

(b) VOTING POWERS

Add new:

7. Life Members 1 Vote

Rationale

Life members have served the Association with distinction and are well placed to participate in the decision-making processes of the Association. It is commensurate with their status that they have a right to vote.

For clarification, it should be noted that this proposal does not include voting rights for Honorary Life Members who are a separate category of membership.

Proposed: N Pont
Seconded: D Prothero

As a consequence, rule 8 (d) “AGM & SGM” to be amended

Rule 8 (d) last sentence add “and a Life Member” after “Council Member” and (at the same time) we should change the gender biased ‘his’ to ‘their’ etc.

NOT CARRIED by the Meeting

4.1 ESFA General Rule 5

CONSTITUTION OF COUNCIL

(a) Size of Council

(iii) Council shall have the power to appoint annually to its membership, an Independent Council Member, as nominated by the Association’s Honorary Auditors by the 1st May. The Independent Council Member shall serve for a term of 3 years.

(iv) In addition, Council shall have the power to appoint annually to its membership, a representative of the Council of the Football Association.

Proposed: A Johnson

Seconded: J Martin

CARRIED by the Meeting

4.2 ESFA General Rule 8 (a)

Delete 2nd sentence:

“The Financial Year shall end on 31 December.”

Replace with:

“The Financial Year shall end on 30 June”

Rationale:

To change the financial accounts from a calendar year to match the operational year, i.e. a season. This will bring the added benefits that income & expenditure years will align & budget preparation will be simplified.

Proposed: D Woollaston

Seconded: S Inger

CARRIED by the Meeting

4.3 ESFA General Rule 8 (a)

Delete 1st sentence:

“The AGM of the ESFA shall be held during the month of June.”

Replace with:

“The AGM of the ESFA shall be held during the month of October or November.”

Rationale:

Rationale:

To enable the AGM to consider the June year-end financial accounts in good time before their submission to the Charity Commission, it is recommended that the AGM is moved to October or November.

Proposed: M Coyne

Seconded: P Jordan

CARRIED by the Meeting

GENERAL COMPETITION RULES

4.4 DELETE current RULE 4 (c) and replace with 4 – CONTROL (c)

(c) All Local and County representative teams must be under the ultimate control of either: -

  1. A practicing teacher, recognised as such by the Department for Education, current employee of education service OR

  2. A retired teacher, or past employee of the education service or an AOTT (Adult Other Than Teacher) who has received direct approval in writing from the appropriate Local or County Schools Football Association to undertake such responsibilities.

(d)

  1. Approval may be withdrawn, by the ESFA, the Local and/or County Schools’ Football Association, at any time.
    Any other person regularly assisting with or coaching a team must have an FA RC check and safeguarding training within the previous 3 years (either through an educational establishment or the F.A.) and operate in the presence of a person who is qualified under (i) or (ii) above.

  2. Associations must, at all times, comply with the FA’s/ESFA’s Safeguarding Criteria. Compliance must be in place at the time of affiliation.

    (e) An individual cannot be the named manager/coach for more than two teams within the same Association, although they can be named as assistant manager/assistant coach for more than two teams.

    (f) All District and County Associations who run representative teams must register all team personnel with the ESFA as a requirement of the affiliation. This information must be registered with the ESFA as part of the affiliation process, prior to affiliation being approved.

    (g) Any official or player representing a School or Association in membership with the Welsh Schools’ FA participating in any of the ESFA national competitions who is reported for misconduct, on or off the field of play, shall be referred to the Council of the Welsh Schools’ FA for appropriate action.

    Rationale:

    To update the current rule to reflect changes in ESFA/FA practice and to reflect changes in the affiliation process to ensure all personnel working with representative teams are fully compliant with current safeguarding requirements and full affiliation to ESFA cannot be approved until all requirements are in place.

    GUIDANCE TO ASSOCIATION SECRETARIES – to be included in the handbook and on the website

    All representative team (Under 18 and below) managers and coaches are required to have an in-date, FA accepted, Criminal Records Check (CRC) (within three years of issue date) at the point of affiliation. Managers and Coaches can be submitted without an in-date, CRC check, but affiliation cannot be approved by the ESFA until they have an accepted, in-date CRC check (in line with FA regulations.)

    Proposed: A Johnson

    Seconded: J Martin

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    COMPETITION RULES

    4.5 Page 33 – Rule 8. Protests

    Currently reads

    (a) All protests shall be in writing and shall be received at the ESFA headquarters within 2 working days of the match concerned.

    (b) No protest relative to the ground, goalposts, or other appurtenances of the game shall be considered unless a protest in writing was made to the referee before the start of the match.

    (c) Any protest shall be signed by the Headteacher / Principal or the relevant Association Secretary as acknowledgment of their approval of its submission.

    (d) The National Competitions Department (NCD) will gather any evidence they wish to have before making their decision.

    (e) A copy of this decision must be relayed to both teams in writing.

    (f) Any appeal against the National Competitions Department (NCD) decision must be made within 2 working days of the receipt of the ruling that the NCD has made.

    (g) The appeal must arrive at the ESFA headquarters by letter, countersigned by the Headteacher / Principal / Association Secretary and accompanied by a School / College / Association cheque for £50. This will be returned if the appeal is upheld.

    (h) The appeal will be considered by members from the ESFA Competitions Committee. The Competitions Committee shall have the power of Council to make all decisions in relation to the organisation, control, and management of any ESFA competition which shall be deemed to be the decision(s) of Council and shall be final and binding on all participants.

    Replace with:

    (a) Protests against decisions made in ESFA National Competitions shall be considered under paragraphs (f) and (g) below.

    (b) Protests arising from competitions organised for schools by a District Schools’ Football Association shall be submitted to that District in line with the ESFA policy for protests, which shall apply as follows:

    1. All protests shall be in writing and shall be received at the DSFA nominated address within 2 working days of the match concerned.

    2. No protest relative to the ground, goalposts, or other appurtenances of the game shall be considered unless a protest in writing was made to the referee before the start of the match.

    3. Any protest shall be signed by the Headteacher/Principal as acknowledgment of their approval of its submission.

    4. The (insert responsible person/committee) will gather any evidence they wish to have before making their decision.

    5. A copy of this decision must be relayed to both teams in writing.

    (c) Should the complainant not be satisfied with the decision of the District Association, an appeal shall be submitted to the CSFA in line with the ESFA policy for appeals, which shall apply as follows:

    1. Any appeal against the decision of a District Schools’ FA within the CSFA boundaries must be made within 2 working days of the receipt of the ruling that the DSFA has made.

    2. The appeal must arrive at the CSFA headquarters by letter, countersigned by the Headteacher/Principal/Association Secretary and accompanied by a School/College/Association cheque for £50. This will be returned if the appeal is upheld.

    3. The appeal will be considered by (insert responsible person/committee) and shall be final and binding on all participants.

    (d) Protests arising from competitions organised for schools by a County Schools’ Football Association shall be submitted to that County in line with the ESFA policy for protests, which shall apply as follows:

    1. All protests shall be in writing and shall be received at the CSFA nominated address within 2 working days of the match concerned.

    2. No protest relative to the ground, goalposts, or other appurtenances of the game shall be considered unless a protest in writing was made to the referee before the start of the match.

    3. Any protest shall be signed by the Headteacher/Principal as acknowledgment of their approval of its submission.

    4. The (insert responsible person/committee) will gather any evidence they wish to have before making their decision.

    5. A copy of this decision must be relayed to both teams in writing.

    (e) Should the complainant not be satisfied with the decision of the County Association, an appeal shall be submitted to the ESFA in line with the ESFA policy for appeals, which shall apply as follows:

    1. Any appeal against the decision of a County Schools’ FA must be made within 2 working days of the receipt of the ruling that the CSFA has made.

    2. The appeal must arrive at the ESFA headquarters by letter, countersigned by the Headteacher/Principal/Association Secretary and accompanied by a School/College/Association cheque for £50. This will be returned if the appeal is upheld.

    3. The appeal will be considered by the ESFA’s Governance Committee and shall be final and binding on all participants.

    (f) Protests arising from competitions organised for schools, districts or counties by The English Schools’ Football Association shall be submitted to the ESFA in line with the ESFA policy for protests, stated below:

    1. All protests regarding ESFA national competitions shall be in writing and shall be received at the ESFA headquarters within 2 working days of the match concerned.

    2. No protest relative to the ground, goalposts, or other appurtenances of the game shall be considered unless a protest in writing was made to the referee before the start of the match.

    3. Any protest shall be signed by the Headteacher / Principal or the relevant Association Secretary as acknowledgment of their approval of its submission.

    4. The National Competitions Department (NCD) will gather any evidence they wish to have before making their decision.

    1. A copy of this decision must be relayed to both teams in writing.

    (g) Should the complainant not be satisfied with the decision of the ESFA, an appeal shall be submitted to the ESFA in line with the ESFA policy for appeals, as stated below:

    1. Any appeal against the National Competitions Department (NCD) decision must be made within 2 working days of the receipt of the ruling that the NCD has made.

    2. The appeal must arrive at the ESFA headquarters by letter, countersigned by the Headteacher / Principal / Association Secretary and accompanied by a School / College / Association cheque for £50. This will be returned if the appeal is upheld.

    3. The appeal will be considered by members of a panel appointed by the ESFA Competitions Committee Chairman. The Competitions Committee shall have the power of Council to make all decisions in relation to the organisation, control, and management of any ESFA competition which shall be deemed to be the decision(s) of Council and shall be final and binding on all participants.

    Rationale:

    To add clarity to the appeals procedure at all levels of schools’ football.

    Proposed: M Hignett

    Seconded: O Aiston

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.6 Page 33 – Rule 10 (d). Players’ Attire

    Currently reads:

    (d) Attire worn by players and staff at national finals must only reflect their School, College or Association and not make any reference to other football institutions.

    Replace with:

    (d) Attire worn by players and staff must only reflect their School, College or Association and not make any reference to other football organisations.

    Rationale:

    To prevent schools, colleges and associations wearing the kit of a professional football club in any round of the competition and not just the final.

    Proposed: G Smith

    Seconded: A Johnston

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.7 Page 34 – Rule 11 (f). Players

    Currently reads:

    In individual school/college competitions, a maximum of three players who attend the same FA Licensed Academy/Centre of Excellence run by a club that employs contract players and who attend a partner school to such a club, can participate in a match; participation of the three licensed players to mean their inclusion in the named squad. (This rule, therefore, does not apply to non-partner Schools).

    Replace with:

    In individual school/college competitions, a maximum of three players who attend an FA Licensed Academy/Centre of Excellence can participate in a match. Participation of the three players relates to their inclusion in the named squad. This rule does not apply to the Open Schools’ Cup competitions.

    Rationale:

    In an attempt to increase participation and to introduce a tiered level of competition for our member schools, the ESFA recommends that this rule is amended to prevent more than three academy / CoE players participating in a National Cup fixture. This is regardless of any partnership between a school and club. If a school wishes to field more than three players that are registered with the programme for excellence, then they can enter into the Open Schools’ Cup. Schools can compete in both competitions as long as they uphold the rules of the competition.

    Proposed: G Smith

    Seconded: A Johnston

    The Meeting amended the proposal to read:

    In individual school/college competitions, a maximum of three players who are registered with any FA Licenced Academy/Centre of Excellence can participate in a match. Participation of the three players relates to their inclusion in the named squad. This rule does not apply to the Open Schools’ Cup competitions.

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.8 Page 34 - New Rule 11 (g). Players

    A pupil on a managed move referral is not eligible to participate in a national competition fixture without the prior permission of the English Schools’ FA.

    Rationale:

    The establishment that is temporarily providing the pupil’s education will not have the pupil on the roll of the school and therefore, the player will not be eligible to represent the school football team in national competition fixtures.

    Proposed: G Smith

    Seconded: A Johnston

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.9 Page 35 – Rule 15. Finance

    Remove existing rule 15 and 16 and replace with:

    Financial assistance relating to national competitions is at all times subject to confirmation by the Trustees in accordance with General Rule 10. Details of financial assistance will be circulated to participating teams at the start of each season.

    Rationale:

    To remove the uncertainty that exists regarding financial support for schools and associations participating in national competition.

    Proposed: S Botham

    Seconded: O Aiston

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.10 Page 43 – Rule 1. Name

    Currently reads:

    ESFA PlayStation Under 13 Schools’ Cup for Girls

    Replace with:

    ESFA PlayStation Under 13 9-a-side Schools’ Cup for Girls

    Rationale:

    To change the format of the Under 13 Girls’ Cup from 11-a-side to 9-a-side in order to offer a more appropriate format of the game for girls in Year 7 and 8.

    Proposed: S Botham

    Seconded: M Hignett

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.11 Page 46 – ESFA Under 15 Inter Association Trophy

    Currently reads:

    INTRODUCTION

    The rules stated below shall be in addition to those entitled “General Competition Rules”.

    1. NAME

    ESFA PlayStation Under 15 Inter Association Trophy

    2. ENTRIES

    The Trophy shall be offered for annual competition amongst the affiliated local Associations who provide football for Secondary age boys. Welsh Local Associations, with permission of the Welsh Schools’ FA, may enter the competition but will be subject to an entry fee of £25 per Association. This will be subject to the General Competition Rule 15 Finance Sections (b)(iii) and (iv) but can make no claim under sections (b)(ii) or (b)(v) of this Rule or General Competition Rule 17.

    3. ELIGIBLE PLAYERS

    Only bona-fide scholars receiving full-time education in accordance with the Education Acts, who are on the roll of a school affiliated to the local Association, over the age of 13 years and under the age of 15 years and midnight between the previous 31st August and 1st September shall be allowed to take part in this Competition (Years 9 & 10).

    4. THE COMPETITION

    (a) The matches shall be played on a cup tie principle and ESFA Trophy ties shall take precedence over all Local and County Association matches.

    (b) The draw will be published on the ESFA website (www.esfa.co.uk) and will be arranged so that the travelling by the away team is kept to a minimum. The final 16 teams shall then be divided into two equal sections, which shall be known as ‘North’ and ‘South’ respectively. The ties in each section will then be drawn independently until the last four teams, two from the North and two from the South remain. These shall be drawn openly and the two remaining teams shall compete in the Final.

    (c) The Semi-Finals and Final Tie shall be played on grounds approved by Council.

    (d) (i) The Home Association after consultation with opponents shall fix the match to take place by the target date and shall confirm the arrangements to the relevant Council Member at least 8 days before the date of the match.

    ii) The relevant Council Member(s) may grant an extension of up to 5 days for the match to be played at a Senior Club Ground. Should agreement not be reached, the matter must be referred to the Competitions Committee. Only the Competitions Committee may grant an extension for any other reason. Should a match which has been granted such an extension be postponed it must be played the following Saturday. Arrangements for such a contingency must be made at the same time as the request for an extension.

    (e) In the event of an Association not being able to stage the game, it shall advise its opponents and the Area Council Member, at least 8 days previous to the last day fixed for the completion of the round, the choice of ground reverting to its opponents.

    5. DURATION OF MATCHES

    The duration of each match shall be 40 minutes each way. If it is deemed inadvisable to play for 80 minutes, the Secretaries of the competing teams and the Referee may decide that the duration of play shall be 70 minutes (35 minutes each way).

    Replace with:

    INTRODUCTION

    The rules stated below shall be in addition to those entitled “General Competition Rules”.

    1. NAME

    ESFA PlayStation Under 15 Inter Association Trophy

    2. ENTRIES

    The Trophy shall be offered for annual competition amongst affiliated local Associations.

    3. ELIGIBLE PLAYERS

    Only bona-fide scholars receiving full time education in accordance with the Education Acts, who are on the role of a school affiliated to the local Association, over the age of 13 years and under the age of 15 years at midnight between 31st August and 1st September shall be allowed to play in this Competition. (Years 9 and 10)

    4. THE COMPETITION

    (a) The draw will be published on the ESFA website (www.esfa.co.uk) and will be arranged so that the travelling by the away team is kept to a minimum.

    (b) Matches shall be played on a cup tie principle and shall take precedence over all other Inter Association matches.

    (c) The final 16 teams shall then be divided into two equal sections, which shall be known as ‘North’ and ‘South’ respectively. The ties in each section will then be drawn independently until the last four teams, two from the North and two from the South remain. These shall be drawn openly and the two remaining teams shall compete in the Final.

    (d) The Semi Finals and Final shall be played on grounds approved by Council.

    5. DURATION OF MATCHES
    The duration of each match shall be 40 minutes each way. If it is deemed inadvisable to play for 80 minutes the Secretaries of the competing teams and the referee may decide that the duration of play shall be 70 minutes (35 minutes each way).

    Rationale:

    To promote consistency regarding Inter Association Trophy and other competition rules.

    Proposed: O Aiston

    Seconded: A Johnston

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.12 Page 51 – Rule 3. Eligible players (ESFA Under 18 Schools & Colleges’ Trophy competitions)

    Currently reads:

    Only bona-fide scholars receiving full time education in accordance with the Education Acts who are on the roll of a school affiliated to the ESFA and who are over the age of 15 years and under the age of 18 years at midnight between the previous 31st August and 1st September shall be allowed to take part in this competition (Year 11 to 13). Students on courses based upon day-release are ineligible to take part in this competition.

    Add:

    Students that have enrolled at a school or college as part of a football academy programme are ineligible to participate in this competition, save for the ESFA Under 18 Elite Schools’ & Colleges’ Cup.

    Rationale:

    The ESFA has created a new competition that is specifically designed to cater for schools and colleges that offer a football academy programme at sixth form level and to prevent the same schools and colleges from dominating the competitions year upon year.

    Proposed: S Botham

    Seconded: O Aiston

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    4.13 Proposals for Constitutional Reform

    The attached paper represents a newly drafted constitution for the AGM’s consideration and this short paper is intended to provide the context and the rationale for the discussion.

    The rationale for change is two-fold:

    • Firstly, our constitution as it stands no longer represents recognised best practice in governance. As funders become increasingly interested in the strength and propriety of decision making, it is important that we try to apply that best practice to our Association, particularly now that we know that the Government, via Sport England, will be able to provide funding directly to “grass roots” sports organisations. This may present us with opportunities to secure funding directly, rather than through third parties, and potentially therefore to increase our funding levels. The draft constitution is based on Charity Commission guidance for membership associations such as ours, and contains within it the accepted current good governance practice.
    • Secondly, as many of you will know, the ESFA is currently an unincorporated charity and as such each individual Council member, as a Trustee, carries personal financial and legal liabilities for the operation of the Association. Whilst we can insure against those liabilities in order to limit them, we cannot guarantee that they will not be incurred. Changing the Association’s status to an “incorporated” charity, via this constitutional reform, provides better protection for those acting as Trustees without any damaging limitations to the Association.

    The proposed constitution does not affect the ESFA’s charitable status, nor does it change our charitable objects, our educational mission or our membership arrangements. It does however split the constitution from the general rules, alters the arrangements for electing and serving as a Council member and separates the responsibilities of Council from Trusteeship. Any conditions of the current general rules which are not superseded by the draft constitution would form the bye-laws of the Association, which would continue to be binding.

    Proposal:

    To adopt the new constitution and subsequently complete the process of conversion to an incorporated charity, to take effect from the start of the 2017/18 season.

    Proposed: P Harding

    Seconded: J Martin

    CARRIED by the Meeting subject to the following amendments:

    Amendment to Agenda Item 4.13

    Insert between ‘constitution’ and ‘and’, the following: - subject to the following amendments:

    1. Proposed Constitution Clause 10(2): Delete all reference to postal or e-mail voting by membership (except for the election of Council Members) CARRIED

    2. Proposed Constitution Clause 13 Appointment of Charity Trustees: Delete and replace by ‘The Council shall recommend charity trustees to membership for election at the Annual General Meeting or at a Special General Meeting. Trustees shall be elected annually.’ NOT CARRIED Subsequently amended by the Meeting to read ‘…Trustees shall be elected for 3 years.’ CARRIED

    1. Proposed Constitution Clause 14 The Council: (2)(a) Replace ‘establish’ by ‘administer’. Add ‘All byelaws shall be established by membership at a general meeting. They may only be amended by voting by membership at a general meeting.’ CARRIED

    2. Proposed Constitution Clause 14 The Council: 3: Delete (a) i-ix and replace by: ’16 elected Council Members shall be elected by membership in the Regions they represent, and the results of these elections announced to membership. All Council Members shall be elected annually.’ NOT CARRIED. Subsequently amended by the Meeting to read ‘…All Council Members shall be elected for 3 years.’ CARRIED

    3. Proposed Constitution Clause 17(1)(a) Delete. CARRIED

    4. Proposed Constitution Clause 31(1)(b) Replace 75% by ‘simple’. CARRIED

    Rationale:

    The Constitutional Mapping document sent with the updated Agenda has proved very useful in assessing the position of the old rules in the new Constitution/Byelaws. However, a number of major changes to established principles appear in the Constitution, but have not been listed for separate consideration. These amendments are an attempt to provide the meeting with such an opportunity.

    Proposed: Berkshire CSFA

    Seconded: Hampshire CSFA

    5 RESOLUTION<

    "Unless mandated by an AGM / SGM to the contrary, Council will ensure that at least 50% of the total amount of grant funding available each year is distributed direct to Local Associations ".

    Proposed: Shepway PSFA

    Seconded: Aston, Erdington & Saltley SFA

    Following assurances from the Chairman of Trustees that the ESFA would remain supportive of its member Districts, this proposal was WITHDRAWN.

    6 RESOLUTION

    Agreement for the ESFA AGM to take place following this meeting

    CARRIED by the Meeting

    This concluded the business of the Special General Meeting, which closed at 2.00 pm

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