National Schools' Football Week

Schools’ Football Week 2020 – Round up

Schools Football week 2020 took place from the 3rd- 7th of February and encouraged more than 22,000 school children from 2704 teams to take part in some sort of footballing activity throughout the week. The ESFA registered schools participating in a variety of activities from crossbar challenges and staff football matches to pupils wearing football shirts for the day and raising money for local charities. It has been a delight to see so many schools and teams get involved with helping to celebrate all things schools’ football!

The ESFA recruited former Schools’ Football, turned professional players, Everton’s Michael Keane and Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham to make videos backing the campaign and talking about their own personal benefits from Schools’ Football – a great start to the week. The campaign was also backed by various ESFA partners, who provided some great prizes and incentives for those schools and teams that got involved with the initiative. Here’s a selection of just some of the tweets from schools and Community Trusts who supported SFW 2020…


Wembley Tour for 30 pupils

As a prize for getting involved in Schools’ football week and registering activity, each school was entered into a draw to win 30 Tickets for a tour of Wembley Stadium courtesy of the FA. Over 340 different schools and teams registered their activity and the ESFA is delighted to announce the winner of the 30 tour tickets as Lings Primary School from Northampton. Although the school was picked at random, their social content also showed that they went above and beyond during the week, replicating the Soccer AM “you know the drill” videos during their break times. These were great to watch and allowed the whole school to get involved.

Bespoke Panini Sticker Spread

Thursday 6th February saw the Schools Football Week – Game On initiative launch, which was aimed at focusing on as much football activity as possible during one day of Schools’ Football Week. Everyone who used the #SFWGameOn hashtag on social media was entered into a draw to win a unique Panini sticker album spread of their team ( example shown below from last season’s international side). The lucky winner of this incredible prize is Ridgeway High School from Merseyside. ESFA Photographer, 353 Photography will head to Ridgeway School for their photos ready for Panini to put together and frame!

Free football kit, courtesy of Pendle

Finally, everyone who submitted a response to the Schools’ Football Week Pupil Survey was entered into a draw to win a full team kit courtesy of ESFA partners and official kit providers, Pendle Sportswear. Tithe Farm Primary School from Bedfordshire were drawn as winners of this competition. Both Pendle and the ESFA are delighted to be able to provide a free kit for this school in recognition of their pupils’ involvement in SFW.

Pupil Survey

As part of Schools’ Football Week 2020 the ESFA created a pupil survey on various topics surrounding schools football and the sport as a whole. This was a unique opportunity for pupils to give their feedback and opinions and the results were very interesting. Over 150 pupils responded to the survey, including providing feedback on whether they felt they had personally benefited from the ESFA’s list of “15 benefits of schools’ football” – the result of this particular question was excellent news for the Association –

Social Impact

Schools’ Football Week 2020 was largely a social media based campaign, aimed at reaching as many people as possible to promote the benefits of playing Schools’ Football. The ESFA’s social posts created over 115,000 impressions from followers on Twitter alone, during the course of the week.

Sports Minister, Nigel Adams, was also heavily supportive of the Schools’ Football week campaign and started off the week with a visit to Oaklands School in Bethnal Green, one of the schools that had registered their activity with the ESFA. During his visit, he talked to the pupils and teachers about why they love playing schools football and the mental health benefits of the sport, linking together Schools’ Football Week and Children’s Mental Health Week. He even got a chance to show off his skills during a kick about at break time. On the Friday, the Sports Minister released a video challenging pupils to find a a ball and a friend and show him their skills with a Keepy Uppie Challenge. We saw loads of great videos of pupils and teachers attempting the challenge!

As an Association, the ESFA has been delighted with this year’s uptake on Schools’ Football Week and is grateful to partners, the FA, Panini, 353 Photography and Pendle Sportswear, specifically for their support with the campaign. Also huge thanks to all the schools, teams, SSPs, Government agencies and Community Trusts that got involved with celebrating and highlighting the wonderful world of Schools’ Football.

featured, National Schools' Football Week

Schools’ Football Week 2020- 3-7 February

The English Schools’ FA (ESFA) is delighted to announce that this season’s Schools’ Football Week (SFW), taking place from 3 – 7 February 2020, has encouraged football opportunities for over 22,500 school pupils across England.

Schools’ Football Week, an ESFA initiative, is a countrywide campaign, designed to highlight the huge scale of Schools’ Football in England and also an opportunity for schools, teams and clubs to showcase their talent, dedication and benefits of schools’ football using their own experiences.

The ESFA invited schools, Community Trusts and Schools’ Football Associations from across England to show their support for Schools’ Football Week and to outline any plans they have in place for the event. Over 300 schools and teams registered their activity and the impact of Schools’ Football Week has some impressive figures attached;

  • We expect more than 2,704 teams (boys, girls and mixed) to be taking part in                     activity between 3 – 7 February
  • We expect more than 22,580 school children in England to be involved in some                kind of activity relating to Schools’ Football Week

ESFA data shows that schools plan to hold both intra and inter-school activities for boys and girls and over 150 schools will be holding coaching or training sessions for their pupils and players to take part in, all in the name of schools’ football. Schools also advised the ESFA they are planning to hold assemblies, integrate football into history and geography lessons as well host challenges for both pupils and teachers to take part in, such as cross-bar challenges, beat the goalie and penalty shootouts. Some schools are holding charity events and inviting pupils to wear their favourite football shirt to school for the day.

Schools and teams that registered their activity for Schools’ Football Week will all be placed into a draw to win 30 tickets for a free tour of Wembley, donated by The FA to support the Schools’ Football Week campaign.

School pupils were also invited to take part in a pupil survey, with a view to giving them a voice and the opportunity to share their thoughts on the football landscape as a whole. Over 150 school pupils filled out the online survey –

  • 70% of them agreed with the current ruling that mixed football should be available for pupils up to the age of Under 18
  • 65% believed that England have a good chance of winning Euro 2020 in June
  • Messi came out on top as the best player in world football.

Aside from this, all of the respondents believed that they had benefitted from at least one of the ESFA’s “15 benefits of Schools’ Football”, which is a reassuring compliment for the Association and its deep rooted values. Pupils also gave their opinions on schools’ football-specific subjects, such as playing formats for various ages of the game – all of the responses will be reviewed by the ESFA as the Governing Body for Schools’ Football and taken into account when making strategic plans for forthcoming seasons. Pupils that completed the survey were given the opportunity to provide their school name and all schools whose details have been received will be in with a chance of winning a full football kit for a squad of 15 from official ESFA kit providers, Pendle.

Former Schools’ Footballers, Michael Keane (Everton and England) and Tammy Abraham (Chelsea and England) created some video content for the ESFA and talked about their own experiences within Schools’ Football and why it was so important to them. The ESFA is delighted to boast such high profile supporters of the work taken out by the Association and hopes to continue to inspire future generations of English players in their professional careers.

The ESFA will be marking the start of Schools’ Football Week on Monday 3 February with the first ever PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup Next Level Live event, taking place at West Bromwich Albion’s Hawthorns Stadium. In conjunction with ESFA partners, PlayStation, the event will provide the opportunity for over 300 school pupils from secondary schools across England to take part in unique careers development sessions hosted by ESFA higher education partner, University Campus of Football Business (UCFB) as well as immersive activities set up throughout the stadium highlighting the various elements of the PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup and featuring some PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup ambassadors.

Thursday 6 February will mark the Schools’ Football Week “Game On” aspect of the campaign – we will be monitoring all activity on social media that takes place on this day to get a good snapshot of Schools’ Football activity within one specific day. All schools or teams that use the hashtag #SFWGameOn on 6 February will be put into a draw to win a framed Panini sticker mock up collection, featuring their own players from their school or club team.

ESFA Chairman, Phil Harding said; “We are delighted to see the impressive figure of school children in England who will get the opportunity to partake in some degree of Schools’ Football thanks to the Schools’ Football Week campaign. The ESFA’s ethos is that of an educational establishment and it’s incredibly important to us that we are able to provide new ways to give children in England the opportunity to take part in football related activity as part of a healthy lifestyle and educational balance.”

The ESFA will be promoting Schools’ Football Week activity across all social media channels from 3 – 7 February and sharing as much content as possible received from participants.