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Soccer In Schools Gets Boost from
Seattle Public School District

Partnership will bring Washington Youth Soccer
community programs to over 47,000 kids

Two years ago, Washington Youth Soccer created its Soccer in Schools program with the goal of teaching the health and social benefits of soccer to Washington students throughout the state.

In March, that effort received a major boost.

The Seattle Public School District, Washington Youth Soccer and Seattle Youth Soccer Association announced a unique partnership the spring that will bring Soccer In Schools to the over 47,000 students in the state’s largest district.

“We’re excited to partner with Seattle Public Schools and the Seattle Youth Soccer Association to have the opportunity to expose almost 50,000 young people in the Puget Sound region to the social and physical benefits of playing the game of soccer,” said David Griffiths, Washington Youth Soccer’s Outreach Programs Specialist. “As we continue to grow the program, we’re looking forward to replicating this partnership with other school districts across the state.”

Since its creation in 2009, Soccer In Schools has reached thousands of students statewide through in-class presentations, appearances by Seattle Sounders FC players and on-field games and skill-building activities.

As part of its new partnership with Seattle Public Schools, the city’s physical education teachers will gain access to Soccer In Schools programs conducted by SYSA coaches and staff, and will be able to serve as an intermediary between the school and the state’s largest youth soccer organization. The program will take place at 17 elementary schools spread predominantly throughout south Seattle, and will begin in the 2011-12 school year.

"We believe this is a ground-breaking program," said SYSA representatives in April. "With access to so many schools, students and P.E. teachers, we can reach a great many young children next year. The benefits for kids in Seattle Public schools in the south end, for our local clubs, and for the position of soccer in the state in general, are significant."

The partnership was announced at a Seattle Public Schools In-Service Training day, where nearly 70 physical education teachers were treated to a presentation by Griffiths and Seattle United's Chris Cadogan on the importance of play to a child’s educational foundation, and how Washington Youth Soccer can help support teachers and their educational goals at a time when schools are experiencing budget cuts.

“This is an exciting opportunity to offer new programs and activities to our students without having to strain any of our existing resources,” said a Seattle Public Schools representative. “We’re looking forward to seeing this partnership grow in the future and are excited to have such eager partners as the Seattle Youth Soccer Association and Washington Youth Soccer.”

Want to find out how you can have Soccer In Schools at your school? Visit the “Community” page at WashingtonYouthSoccer.org, or contact David Griffiths at david@washingtonyouthsoccer.org


 
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