Oxford Hawks is now a Talent Academy
Published on 12th Oct, 2022
The introduction of Talent Academies hosted by Clubs is part of the new Talent System that England Hockey are introducing to replace the existing Single System pathway for juniors (which has featured Development and Academy Centres at County Level and above those, Junior Performance Centres leading to Futures Cup and ultimately selection for National Age Groups). The stated aim of the new Talent System is to produce greater breadth and depth in the talent pool, achieved at least in part through a much greater focus being placed on technical skills. The Talent Academies (under the responsibility and management of the host club) will replace the Performance Centres (which were the responsibility of and managed by EH). In the fullness of time, EH plan to create a network of 24 Talent Academies around the country (so far Academy status has been awarded to 17 clubs). Being selected to host a Talent Academy is a notable achievement for Hawks, but it is going to represent a very significant commitment, not only to get it set up, but also in the ongoing running of the Academy.
Junior players will be selected for each academy from a catchment area that is allocated to each host club by EH. We will have a wide-ranging catchment area, including obviously Oxfordshire but also stretching out to Swindon, to Cheltenham, to Daventry, to Northampton, to Milton Keynes, to Aylesbury. The aim of each TA will be to develop the highest potential junior players within the catchment area in the age range 15-18 (26 boys and 26 girls, so up to 52 players in total). Each Academy will deliver an annual programme over a 44 week period from September to July, starting from this September. It is most likely that Academy sessions will be held on a Monday evening at BRN.
We will be establishing an Academy Management Committee of around 5 or 6 people, one of whom must be independent of Hawks and we will also be establishing a ‘Stakeholder Forum’ through which we will communicate about the Academy with other hockey ‘entities’ (clubs, schools, county association) as well as players and parents.
We will be commencing the process of recruiting Academy coaches very shortly.
For those that are interested, other Academy host clubs announced so far are;
Beeston HC, Cambridge City HC, Durham University, East Grinstead HC, Guildford HC, Hampstead & Westminster HC, Holcombe HC, Old Loughtonians HC, Oxford Hawks HC, Reading HC, Sevenoaks HC, Stourport HC, Surbiton HC, Team Bath Buccs HC, Timperley HC, University of Exeter, Wimbledon HC
If anyone would like to know more about what it will mean to be an Academy Host Club, or if you might be interested in supporting the Academy Management Committee, please contact Neil Biggs at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07900 883843.
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