9 Steps To A Successful Soccer Parent Orientation Meeting Schedule Agenda

Soccer Parent Orientation Meeting Schedule Agenda

First things first… Attendance is MANDATORY!

If a parent can’t make it in person, set up a time to speak with them directly over the phone and do the meeting one on one. An athlete should not be able to participate in your program until the requirements of the parent orientation meeting have been met.

Okay, so what do you discuss during the meeting?

I like to break it up into 9 short sections…

Part 1: Introduce The Coaching Staff (5-10 minutes)

Start by introducing yourself and the other coaches. Provide a little background about yourself, your experience in the sport, whether you’ve coached before, any certifications you’ve achieved, and why you’re coaching.

Have each of the assistant coaches and administrators (if any) do the same.

Snapshot: your background | experience in the sport | why you are coaching | certifications achieved

Part 2: Your Coaching Philosophy (10-15 minutes)

This is the time to discuss the goals of your program, and the benefits you expect your athletes to get from participating.

For example:

⚽ How will you balance:

– having a winning team

– helping your athletes have fun

– developing your athletes physically, socially, and emotionally

⚽ How will you determine who plays what position, and how much playing time each athlete gets?

⚽ How will you develop positive character traits and values?

⚽ What do you want your athletes to learn in your program?

⚽ What role does academics play in your program?

⚽ Describe your coaching strategies with respect to practice and competition.

⚽ How will you encourage participation from all your athletes?

⚽ How do you adapt your coaching style to athletes of different age and skill level? And so on.

Snapshot: key benefits for your athletes | process for deciding playing time and positions | importance of winning vs fun vs development | role of academics | your coaching strategy | positive values you will teach

Part 3: Coaches Code of Conduct (10 minutes)

Next, pass out a copy of your coaches code of conduct to each parent. Your entire coaching staff (including you) should sign it.

This document tells players and parents how you will conduct yourself during practices and games, and the moral and ethical standards that you will abide by.

It’s a hugely important step towards gaining the trust and respect of your team.

Your Coaches Code of Conduct outlines the be- havior guidelines you the coaching staff will be held to. Sign and distrib- ute a copy to every team member.

Snapshot: distribute signed copy to each parent | discuss the agreement

Part 4: Safety and Potential Risks (10 minutes)

Parents need to understand that all sports and physical activities carry some risk.

Give a brief outline of the common injuries that athletes can suffer in your sport, and the steps all team members can take to minimize those risks.

For example:

⚽ Helping to inspect the facilities prior to each practice or competition

⚽ Ensuring all gear and protective equipment is used properly

⚽ Advising the coach if an athlete has any existing condition which puts him or her at risk (ie. serious allergies, previous injuries etc.)

Your process for recognizing injuries and providing first aid And so on.

Next, hand out a copy of your informed consent form and have all parents sign it.

Snapshot: common injuries | facilities safety | equipment safety | parents must notify coaching staff of pre- existing conditions | first aid | distribute consent form

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Part 5: Specifics Of Your Program (10-15 minutes)

This is where you get into the nitty gritty of how the team will operate.

For example:

⚽ When the season starts and finishes

⚽ The times and places you will practice and compete

⚽ When and where the team will travel, and how travel will be organized

⚽ The equipment required to participate, and where it can be purchased

⚽ The fees to participate, and any fundraising plans you have

⚽ Any conditioning or practice programs the athletes should be doing on their own

⚽ Any nutritional recommendations (ie. pre-game meals, snacks, hydration etc.)

Snapshot: season start and finish | practice and competition schedule | travel | equipment | fees | fundraising | at-home conditioning | nutritional recommendations

Part 6: Player and Parent Codes of Conduct (15-20 minutes)

Pass out a Player Code of Conduct form to each athlete, and a Parent Code of Conduct to each parent.

Go through each of the items and answer any questions.

Have them sign it and return it to you during the meeting.

Important: The athlete CANNOT participate in your program until both of these docu- ments are signed and returned.

Snapshot: distribute player code and discuss | distribute parent code and discuss |answer questions or concerns

Part 7: Volunteer Opportunities (10 minutes)

One of the most effective strategies for getting parents on your side is to have them walk a mile in your shoes.

Some suggested roles that parents can fill:

⚽ Scorekeeping or taking stats

⚽ Running the snack stand

⚽ Organizing fundraising programs

⚽ Running and maintaining a team website (Sportata.com is my personal favorite)

⚽ Game officiating (referee)

⚽ Team manager Equipment manager

⚽ Travel manager

Take down the names and contact information for each parent and follow up with them within a week.

Try to define their role as clearly as possible and let them know you’ll be there to support them if and when they need you.

Snapshot: ask for volunteers to fill administrative and team management positions

Part 8: Question and Answer (10-15 minutes)

I prefer to encourage questions throughout the meeting, so that all team members feel included in the process and have the chance to express themselves.

Still, it’s a good idea to have a formal Q&A period at the end of the meeting. Open up the floor to the parents and athletes to discuss any questions or concerns they have.

Remember, when you’re fielding questions, keep your body language open and neutral.

Sit down and lean forward if you can. Uncross your arms and legs.

Nod your head and maintain eye contact but don’t glare.

Don’t cut the speaker off, even if you disagree with what he’s saying.

Before you respond, show that you’ve understood the question by taking notes or repeating back what the person is saying (ie. “So you’re concerned about the amount of travel involved?”).

Part 9: Wrap-Up (5 minutes)

End the meeting by providing parents with your contact information and letting them know the best times to get a hold of you.

If they have an issue they’d like to discuss, it’s much better to have them contact you over the phone or set up a time and place to meet that’s separate from the playing field.

In Appendix 1, you can print out a step by step template for running your own Parent Orientation meeting.

Remember, it doesn’t have to be dynamic… or fun… or super-detailed.

You don’t need to be a good “public speaker” (trust me – I can barely make a toast at a wedding without stuttering).

Just keep it informal and relaxed.

Bring some healthy refreshments if you can.

Smile a lot — don’t take yourself too seriously.

The important thing is to inform them about your program and listen to their concerns.

Keep the lines of communication open throughout the season, and you’ll be amazed at how much better your parent relationships will be.

Snapshot: provide contact information | best time to call

Click to download the Soccer Parent Orientation Meeting Schedule Agenda

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