Today AFL Northern Territory (AFLNT) has commenced a review of umpiring which, at its conclusion will produce a five-year strategy for the future of NT umpiring.
The review will evaluate umpiring across the Northern Territory and has six main areas of focus:
• The effectiveness of education, coaching and feedback structures to support umpires
• The quality of the environment and culture of the umpiring groups
• The level and quality of recruitment and retention
• The resourcing and structure of umpiring in the NT (internal & support staff)
• The quality and relevance of talent umpires pathways (academies, NEAFL & VFL W), and,
• The role of the NTFLUA in the support of umpires & working relationships with AFLNT
The first major step will begin today, with all umpires registered from 2015 on, as well as club committee members and AFLNT staff/former umpiring staff receiving an invitation to participate in an online survey.
Throughout the review the following stakeholders will be engaged process:
• AFL Northern Territory staff & former umpiring staff
• Affiliated League Committees
• League Junior & Senior club committees and coaches
• Umpires (and family of junior umpires)
• AFL umpiring staff
AFLNT oversees all leagues, development and talent programs from grassroots Auskick to senior NT Thunder and governs a total of ten leagues across the Northern Territory which will be included in the review:
• Barkly Australian Football League
• Big Rivers Australian Football League
• Central Australian Football League
• Elcho Island Football League
• Groote Eylandt Football League
• Lajamanu Football League
• Maningrida Football League
• Northern Territory Football League (NTFL)
• Tiwi Islands Football League
• Wadeye Football League
AFLNT Manager of Club and Game Development, Emily Wastle will lead the review and said she had an experienced team to support her with the process.
“AFLNT Manager of Talent and Pathways Wally Gallio will be the executive support on this project and we will be well supported by a number of key personnel.
“A local contingent of Darryl Griffiths, AFLNT Competitions Manger, Sean Ranie, NTFLUA President and Sam Cunningham who is AFLNT’s Umpire Development Coordinator will be joined by Adam Davis who is the AFL National Umpire Development Manager and will provide a great insight into what is happening nationally,” said Wastle.
AFLNT CEO Stu Totham said the review was timely and encompasses a number of different departments across the organisation.
“It is well documented that umpire recruitment and retention is difficult every year and we want to find the best way to operate moving forward. The comprehensive review will not only cover this but also governance, standards, pathways, education and resourcing among other things.
"Umpires are a crucial part of our football infrastructure and we need ensure that our investment in this area matches the growth of the game," he said.
The expected completion date for findings to be released is the end of January 2019 and full details of the review and its process and scope can be found on the AFLNT website HERE.