Football Queensland (FQ) is delighted to announce it has established a new Referee Academy to fast-track the development of the state’s most promising young match officials.
An inaugural 33-person panel drawn from regional and metropolitan areas has been hand-picked to receive individualised training and guidance.
The identified referees are all aged 16 to 22 and will work with experienced coaches across a two-year mentorship focusing on technical, professional and physical development.
FQ State Referee Manager Jacqui Hurford said the Academy’s core objectives were to improve education, retention and representation levels.
“Young referees need to see pathways in front of them and the Referee Academy will increase the number and quality of Queenslanders officiating at the highest levels,” Hurford said.
“The more support and aspirational goals we can give them, the better chance we have of keeping them involved in the game.
“This state has produced some exceptional referees over the years and we want that tradition to continue long into the future.
“Football Queensland has already done a lot of work towards achieving the growth targets we set in the Strategic Plan with new initiatives like the teal shirt and the first year referee pack already in place.
“It’s exciting to add to the announcements made over the past six to nine months and we look forward to building a really vibrant and supportive network for our young match officials.”
The inaugural Referee Academy will feature representatives from FQ’s Brisbane, Central, Mackay, North, Sunshine Coast, South West and Wide Bay zones after more than 80 high-quality applications were received.