The Partnership, beginning at the start of the new term year 1 September 2021, will allow aspiring footballers to study towards a recognised BTEC Sports Development qualification, (SFC Open Academy – Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Sport), alongside the opportunity to play for Sheringham Football Club in the Eastern Counties leagues.
Oliver Burwood, CEO of DNEAT said: “Open Academy has successfully delivered this course for the past ten years, offering an exceptional educational provision with many of their former students attaining university placements in the UK and scholarships in the USA, along with playing semi-professional football. This reflects the rich range of educational opportunity that the Trust supports its academies to provide at all levels.”
Jon Ford, Principal of Open Academy, Norwich, said: “Open Academy is well known as a strong choice for football post-16 in Norfolk. Six former students featured regularly in the Sheringham FC first team last season. The program makes full use of our fantastic facilities including the excellent 4G Pitch, experienced and skilled coaches and teachers, and a reputation for individualised support. This exciting partnership secures the next developmental stage for our football programme, and we are delighted to be partnering with the ambitious Sheringham FC.”
Suzanne Cherrie, Secretary of Sheringham FC said: “The Partnership is a major milestone in the future direction of the Club. We are immensely proud to be able to play a part in assisting students at the start of their chosen career paths and understand the responsibility this brings. We are truly excited to start our journey with the fantastic team at Open Academy.”
Sixth form students enrolling in the course will undertake:
- 8 hours per week of BTEC Sport theory, leading to the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sport, equivalent to 3 A Levels
- 5 hours per week of an optional additional level 3 course/A level (e.g. ICT, Business. Maths and Applied Science) to run alongside our Football programme.
- The opportunity to re-take English and maths GCSEs
- 3 hours per week of match time in countywide competitions.
- Opportunity to play in the Thurlow Nunn Senior and Youth League
- 8 hours per week of practical football training with highly qualified UEFA coaches
- Additional coaching sessions and lectures delivered by Sheringham FC coaching staff
Suzanne Cherrie said: “Sheringham Football Club welcomes this major opportunity of establishing a sustainable player path through to the first team, as well as enhancing an already thriving youth set up.”
She added: “In addition, the Club will look to form links with the local High Schools to promote the opportunity for students in the North Norfolk area to enrol on the course.”