Bishopston Comprehensive School in Swansea has recently placed 16 of its pupils onto Wales Netball’s ‘Intro to Umpiring’ course.
Held over two days, on the first day candidates get to grips with basic rules and theory before undertaking practical exercises on the second day. The aspiring umpires from Bishopston represent a range of clubs from the surrounding area, including Mumbles-Treforus, Bishopston and Treforus. Pupils were encouraged to get involved with the course by their PE teacher, Rhian Williams.
In May 2017, Wales Netball launched a brand-new umpiring course as the start of the officiating pathway. The new ‘Intro to Umpiring’ course replaces the Q Award as the ‘gateway’ into netball umpiring. The course was completely re-designed from scratch, to make sure that new umpires have the necessary knowledge and some on-court experience of umpiring once they’ve completed the course. Learners also receive the added benefit of their own whistle and rule book, giving them the tools required to start their journey to becoming part of ‘team white’.
Hannah Pick, Netball Development Officer for Mid & West Wales was pleased with how the Bishopston pupils engaged with the course. She said: “The girls picked up the rules and signal very quickly! It is wonderful to see such enthusiasm for the Intro to Umpiring course in Swansea and I am confident that those in attendance today will develop into fantastic umpires and ambassadors for netball.”