ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

National developments, strategies and ideas.
Richard James
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Richard James » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:31 pm

Ray Sayers wrote: Saturday - spent all day helping set up, do the scoring, then clear up after the EPSCA U9 finals (18 teams, 12 players per team + reserves + families).
Ray

On behalf of the Richmond team: I wasn't there myself but I understand our players had a really good time, so many thanks to you and your team for all their hard work.

Angus French
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Angus French » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:35 pm

Alex McFarlane wrote:The type of membership a junior organiser wants will depend on the players they have. A school teacher with only their own school club to consider will want a cheap and cheerful one. Possible even a club membership at say £20 would be a better option if it allowed participation in graded games in school competitions than a £2 individual membership. The logic for this suggestion is simple. The school may well pick up the £20 tab, the teacher is the one most likely to have to pay the £2 per head every time they bring in a reserve and possibly even for some regulars.
Individual membership might be better. It would allow the ECF to engage directly and offer membership extras. It would also allow the individual to easily upgrade their membership to a higher category. Perhaps an event organiser could charge a team participation fee which would cover the cost of individual memberships.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:43 pm

Angus French wrote:Perhaps an organisation (such as a school) could be charged a participation fee which covers the cost of individual memberships.
From the viewpoint of a team manager, I would have though that if you enter a competition which has stringent eligibility rules ( as in you must be attending the school), that what you want is to pay is an entry fee which covers you without additional payment for anyone who might be selected or called on to play at any time during the length of the competition. Even better if it's free entry of course.

If the ECF wants to offer a service whereby it distributes details of forthcoming events on a regular timetable, it can offer that on a stand alone basis. Would anyone pay for such a service? Something that says "register to be put on our notification service" is somewhat easier to justify to those who would see communications from the ECF as spam.

Michele Clack
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Michele Clack » Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:57 pm

Ray I do hope your wife is OK now. It sounds like your part of the world is well served in regard to Junior Chess as a result of your efforts.

Sean Hewitt
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Sean Hewitt » Mon Apr 29, 2013 2:48 pm

Ray Sayers wrote:
Sean Hewitt wrote:
Alex McFarlane wrote:Without these organisers there would be no more than a handful of young chess players taking up the game at all. These organisers are the lifeblood of chess in this country.
That's one view of course.
Saturday - spent all day helping set up, do the scoring, then clear up after the EPSCA U9 finals (18 teams, 12 players per team + reserves + families).
Sunday - spent the day running a Last Chance Saloon for kids to qualify for a Megafinal.
On Saturday night my wife spent the night in A&E.

Nice to know unpaid volunteer Junior organisers efforts are so highly regarded!
Everyone appreciates the effort put in by all involved I'm sure. I'm trying to ascertain the effectiveness of that effort, which is not quite the same thing.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Apr 29, 2013 3:06 pm

Sean Hewitt wrote: I'm trying to ascertain the effectiveness of that effort, which is not quite the same thing.
If you look at outcomes, by which I mean the number of players in the 18 to 30 age range (18 - 40 even), and the numbers of FMs, IMs and GMs in that age group, it doesn't seem that the focus on primary schools in the past twenty years has had much practical effect on adult numbers. By contrast the focus on secondary school chess and universities in the 1950s and 1960s resulted in a national team being able to match the Soviet Union and all the over 40s you see at Congresses and in league chess. I'm not sure quite how much the BCF really had to do with past success, but at the very least it didn't try to get in the way too much.

IanDavis
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by IanDavis » Mon Apr 29, 2013 6:01 pm

Perhaps we should look to FIDE and ask people to pay a special fee before they are allowed to teach and another fee before they were allowed to promote the game.

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Mon Apr 29, 2013 6:13 pm

The point that was made earlier in the thread about most junior chess being run as part of tournaments: it's no doubt true, but is most of it run as tournaments that would require Silver-level membership, if graded?

Take the UK Chess Challenge, for example. If I understand the structure of the competition correctly, the qualifying rounds are played within schools, and those qualifying rounds feed into county Megafinals, with each Megafinal taking its competitors from the schools in that county. So a Megafinal will, by construction, be a tournament such that a requirement for entry into it is eligibility to play for the relevant county. That, under the exemptions formalized at the April Council meeting, is an event requiring Bronze, not Silver, membership. (The internal school qualifier is also Bronze under the same rule.)

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David Shepherd
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by David Shepherd » Mon Apr 29, 2013 6:17 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:The point that was made earlier in the thread about most junior chess being run as part of tournaments: it's no doubt true, but is most of it run as tournaments that would require Silver-level membership, if graded?

Take the UK Chess Challenge, for example. If I understand the structure of the competition correctly, the qualifying rounds are played within schools, and those qualifying rounds feed into county Megafinals, with each Megafinal taking its competitors from the schools in that county. So a Megafinal will, by construction, be a tournament such that a requirement for entry into it is eligibility to play for the relevant county. That, under the exemptions formalized at the April Council meeting, is an event requiring Bronze, not Silver, membership. (The internal school qualifier is also Bronze under the same rule.)
I think it requires neither as not graded, so not a good example. Most junior tournaments that are graded have no county restrictions.

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Mon Apr 29, 2013 6:25 pm

David Shepherd wrote:
IM Jack Rudd wrote:The point that was made earlier in the thread about most junior chess being run as part of tournaments: it's no doubt true, but is most of it run as tournaments that would require Silver-level membership, if graded?

Take the UK Chess Challenge, for example. If I understand the structure of the competition correctly, the qualifying rounds are played within schools, and those qualifying rounds feed into county Megafinals, with each Megafinal taking its competitors from the schools in that county. So a Megafinal will, by construction, be a tournament such that a requirement for entry into it is eligibility to play for the relevant county. That, under the exemptions formalized at the April Council meeting, is an event requiring Bronze, not Silver, membership. (The internal school qualifier is also Bronze under the same rule.)
I think it requires neither as not graded, so not a good example. Most junior tournaments that are graded have no county restrictions.
I know it's not graded, hence my "would" clause in the first paragraph.

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David Shepherd
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by David Shepherd » Mon Apr 29, 2013 6:38 pm

I didn't quite see the relevance as it is not graded as for example many sections wouldn't qualify as no clocks are used, so in its current format much of it couldn't be graded, hence no membership requirement. Ok it might require bronze membership due to the rules (if they were different and grading criteria met), but that isn't the case its just hypothetical. But even then I am not sure that any requirements would mean that only bronze membership is required - mega-finals are open to players from any county (they just can't win the prize, but can qualify for the next round)



I think the points made above related to those tournaments that are graded and I can't see why most if not all of them wouldn't require silver membership.
Last edited by David Shepherd on Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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David Shepherd
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by David Shepherd » Mon Apr 29, 2013 6:53 pm

Apologies if I have got this all wrong and I haven't checked the rules closely but are you saying that if counties closed their doors and made junior tournaments restricted to their county only then only bronze membership would apply? If so is that really what the ECf want to encourage :( . Sorry I very am busy at the moment and don't have much time to go through all this - I just dipped in to this thread so have probably just got it all wrong
Last edited by David Shepherd on Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:07 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote: So a Megafinal will, by construction, be a tournament such that a requirement for entry into it is eligibility to play for the relevant county.
I don't think Megafinals have ever been graded. It's only the last two stages of the UK Challenge that are. By the process of eliminating weak players, these usually contain players who already have grades.

The approach used by many local junior organisations is to run a series of rapidplays for local players. These would be structured as events for individuals and would presumably be classified by the ECF as requiring Silver membership. The original Farthing papers classified them in this way and was looking for an unrealistically high income from this subset.

I don't think they usually impose county only restrictions. Browsing a handful of players, you note that the most active ones play in events in several counties, for example all of Kent, Surrey and Sussex.

It's an interesting loophole that if a County Junior organiser restricts entry to the home county, then they can arbitrage the ECF's membership rules to possible financial advantage.

Juniors aren't members of chess clubs in the traditional sense of playing for that club in a local league. Rather they participate in activities run by the local organisations. These may mostly be open tournaments but also include the odd inter-county event including those nominally run by the ECF.

Andrew Varney
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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Andrew Varney » Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:37 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:The point that was made earlier in the thread about most junior chess being run as part of tournaments: it's no doubt true, but is most of it run as tournaments that would require Silver-level membership, if graded?
I think that tournaments qualifying for this exemption would be few and far between. We run one in Oxfordshire to select the strongest players for the EPSCA U11 county team (hence restricted by age and geography), some of the stronger counties such as Surrey and Sussex run a few as far as I can see from the list of events sent for grading, but my guess is that there are probably less than 10 total in a year through the country that would benefit in any way from this.

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Re: ECF National Secondary Schools Co-ordinator

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Mon Apr 29, 2013 9:44 pm

Sean Hewitt wrote:What I've actually done is asked what their track record is because I don't know. Perhaps you could tell us what it is? Until we see it, and compare it with similar countries, it's impossible to comment whether they are having "limited success" as you put it, or not. I have certainly made no claim as to what their track record actually is.
Rather than debating the `track record` the ECF needs to consult the views of junior organisers, look at what is being done well and what is not, what the frustrations are, what the ECF can do to help and what junior organisers need to do differently (some will be more open minded than others). I don't know why this seems to be so difficult.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

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