Parent/Player Manual

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Introduction

The SUSC Parent Player Manual 
The Parent Player Manual is designed to guide players and parents through the SUSC club operation. The ’Club’ in this case pertains only to the travel teams. The varying other programs within the Club, including the indoor arena operation, are not programs that will be referred to in this manual. There is a necessity to produce this manual, as it is critical that each player and parent clearly understands the philosophy of the Club. SUSC currently has 50+ competitive teams. With so many players, and of course parents, everybody should know their role and realize the chain of command. The Parent-Player Manual is the vehicle that will help to visualize the club operation and attempt to shed light on how the entire operation is managed.  Each parent is asked to not only read through this manual but also sign a contract/form that says that they have read it.

Role of the Director of Player Development
The role of the ’Directors of Coaching’ is to organize the Club in such a way that the players are given the very best opportunity to become a better soccer player in a safe and challenging environment. It is vital that players enjoy playing for the Club and of course have fun doing so. Enjoying the game will not only help players learn better, but it will enhance many other aspects of a healthy living environment, such as learning social skills and building character. Through close monitoring of player and coaching development, Directors are able to give concise feedback to players and coaches. The feedback, referred to as coaching education, is the foundation of helping the afore mentioned become the best player or coach they can be. We are delighted to have been given the opportunity to shape the Club in this way, and with the help of our coaches and staff, we are determined to continually enhance the Seacoast United product.

The Parents’ Role
The existence of Seacoast United would not at all be possible if it wasn’t for the support shown by parents. After all it is the parents who pay all of the related tuiton and drive players to practice and games each week. The SUSC staff respects this fact and realizes the importance of parental involvement with Seacoast United Soccer Club. However, parents must realize there are boundaries to their involvement. Boundaries are set up to help each child’s development.  It has become necessary to consistently remind parents of these boundaries. To help this situation the guidelines outlined below have been defined.  Please reference the Parent Code of Conduct by clicking here.

Please exercise the following:
· Drop players off on time for games and practices. If you are going to be late please inform the coach.
· During games feel free to support and cheer the players and team. The atmosphere should always portray that of a ’youth soccer game’ therefore getting emotionally involved in the game is unnecessary.
· During practices, try to give your child the freedom to train with their team without mom or dad watching every minute of every practice. Parents should feel free to drop players at practice and then maybe enjoy some personal time.  Perhaps visiting the local shops and taking a walk or jog is encouraged.
· If you have a question for the coach concerning an incident with your son or daughter that directly relates to a game, you must wait 24 hours before calling or emailing the coach (aka the "24-hour rule"). Please allow coaches time to respond to your questions as not all SUSC coaches are full time employees of the Club.

Unacceptable conduct:
· Being overzealous on the sideline during games.
· Berating or directing degrading remarks at players, opposition coaches or referees.
· Not following the 24-hour rule.
· Using foul language.
· Coaching from the sideline.

If it is brought to a coaching director’s attention that a parent has been involved in ’unacceptable behavior’, that parent will be asked to meet with SUSC staff. If SUSC deems the parent has overstepped their boundaries they will be told they are no-longer welcome at Seacoast United.  This means they will not be allowed in the Indoor Arena or at the Outdoor Complex. If a parent continues not to adhere to the wishes of SUSC their son or daughter will be removed form the roster. If SUSC feels a warning is the best action to take with a parent, they will be verbally warned that if the action occurs again they will be dismissed from the Club.

THERE WILL BE NO WRITTEN WARNING AT ANY TIME CONCERNING PARENTAL BEHAVIOR. THIS IS THE WARNING. ANY UNTOWARD BEHAVIOR WILL NOT BE TOLERATED.

Players’ Role
Seacoast United’s role is to develop players of all abilities and provide a pathway through to adulthood. All of the players have the opportunity to be associated with USSF qualified coaches that love soccer. They have all had varying degrees of experience and they are all willing to share those experiences with the players. Remember that the coaches are here to help you, be respectful of this and always give your best. Below is a list that we believe players should adhere to:

· Remember to thank your parents for giving you the opportunity to play for Seacoast United.
· Practice is essential to your development. You must be prepared to work hard all of the time at each practice, and always be on time.
· Take care of your equipment. Brush your boots off if they are covered in mud, rather than throwing them in your bag and leaving them until your next practice. Make sure your ball is adequately pumped up, and remember to wear the allocated training kit (shirts, shorts, socks) for every practice.
· Maintain good sportsmanship throughout games and practice. Remember to shake the hands at the end of games with your teammates, the referees and opposing team.
· The coaches are there to help you. If you don’t understand something the coach does or says, don’t be afraid to ask the coach to explain.
· Indoor practice time is very important part of your development. Use the time to your advantage, warm up before you get on the field, and while on the field waiting for the coach, work with the ball rather than standing around talking.
· Watch soccer on TV. There are many televised games from the U.S., South America and Europe. You should make the time to watch these games and see how the game is played at the highest level.  Pick out a favorite player from the MLS and from abroad. Watch these players and try to emulate them.
· As a member of Seacoast United you are expected to behave on and off the field in a manner befitting that honor.  The behavior of our players throughout the history of SUSC has always been impeccable, the Club expects that to continue.
· Education should be your main focus.  However, as a Seacoast United player and part of your personal development, we expect you to manage your life so you are able to dedicate your time to both.

The Role of the Team Manager
Each team will have a parent volunteer that will act as ’team manager’, that is chosen by the coach. The TM will help to coordinate any communication between the coach and the team.

Specific responsibilities are:
· Coordinate travel to tournaments by reserving hotel rooms and registering/checking-in the team before the tournament.
· Communicate to parents and players about late cancellations or changes to the schedule.
· Coordinate any changes in equipment.
· Help to get volunteers for SUSC events
· Attend periodic meetings held at SUSC coordinated by the Club.

Team Managers are not responsible for coaching or coaching decisions. They are not a sounding board for parental or player issues. If you have a concern you must speak with the coach. Team managers are purely to act as an administrator help to the coach.

Player Tuition and Financial Aid

Team Tuitions
Tuition information will be posted during scheduled tryout dates for 2017/18.

Collection of Player Fees
Seacoast United will be utilizing an online tuition payment system.   It is very important that, regardless of a Financial Aid Application, the first payment is made on time.   All equipment registration costs are an upfront cost to the Club, so timely payments from our players’ families are critical.

As a reminder, all fees collected from players act directly toward providing SUSC members with the best soccer opportunities. Please make every effort to make Club payments on time.  Player fees must be up to date for the current season based on timelines provided in the Tuition Breakdown charts, or it may affect player eligibility.

In the event that a player has outstanding tuition fees from a previous season, they will not receive a player pass card or be allowed to play for the Club until full settlement is received or a financial payment plan has been setup and agreed upon by Kelly Kelly.

Financial Aid
Financial Aid forms are available on the Seacoast United Foundation’s website here. Forms can be downloaded, completed and sent in to the Seacoast United Foundation.  For more information on scholarship/financial aid awards and deadlines, please visit www.seacoastunitedfoundation.org.  

Once financial aid or multi-player discounts are awarded, individuals will be notified if they have received an award, and the amount of that award.

All tuition due prior to the financial aid deadline should be paid regardless of financial aid application status. Questions regarding financial aid should again be directed to Kathie Richard at krichard@seacoastunited.org.

Financial Aid Form:  Please visit the Seacoast United Foundation website here for available scholarship programs. 

The Teams

Tournaments, State Cup and League Play
Coaches have the direct responsibility of the team.  The Coaching Directors will decide upon a particular league and tournament in which to compete. Coaches manage the team as they see fit, with input from the Directors. The following information will set guidelines on how each team will operate during the year, with a month-by-month breakdown of events and activities.

Once the Coaching Directors have decided upon a particular league and tournament, parents and players are informed. Coaches often have two or more choices of leagues they can play in, but they must decide what league is best suited to the team based on ability. The league a team enters can change from year to year, or even between fall and spring. Similarly, the Coaching Director will decide what tournament a team will play in, again based on the team’s ability. Fall/spring teams will play in varying amount of tournaments, depending on the teams’ budget and league schedule.  A coach may enter the team into extra tournaments. If a coach decides to play in more than their allotted tournaments, the team must pay for this tournament out of pocket, including the related coach’s expenses.  Several of the teams will be entered into State Cup or Open Cup.  These competitions take place in the spring only, and the preliminary rounds of the competition start in April/May. Winners of the State Cup competition will represent the Club and the state at the Regional Finals in July.  The State Cup and the Open Cup are round-robin type tournaments.

Season Breakdown

Fall/Spring teams (U-9 through U-14 boys and girls).
This schedule is not conclusive and subject to change per coach’s requests.  Information below reflects 2016/17 season.
· August Preseason Training Camp (mid-August)
· August Outdoor practice begins - 2 / week
· September Labor Day Tournaments
· September Outdoor League Season begins
· October Columbus Day Tournaments
· November & December Indoor league play, Session #1
· November & December Indoor training, one per week
· January - Break from Club, no training/games
· February & March Indoor training, one per week. (Total indoor training sessions 16)
· February Indoor Tournament (Hampton, NH)
· February/March Indoor Friendlies (1 weekend day, Topsham ME)
· March & April Indoor league play, Session #3
· March Seacoast United Tournaments, Epping (Elite/Premier teams)
· April Outdoor practice begins - 2 / week
· April Outdoor League season begins
· April/May State Cup Tournament (Elite/Premier Teams Only)
· May Memorial Day Tournaments
· June State Cup Finals
· June Fathers Day Tournament  
· July Regional Tournament (State Cup Champions only)

Spring Teams (U15 through U18 Boys and Girls).
This schedule is not conclusive and subject to change per coach’s requests.  Information below reflects 2015/16 season.
· June/July Tryouts
· January - March indoor / outdoor training commences - approx. 1x per week
· January, February & March indoor league play - days and times TBD - 1x per week
· April Outdoor practice begins - 2x per week
· April - June Outdoor season - schedule dependant on league - 1-2 games per week
· April/May State Cup Tournament  (Elite & Premier Only)
· May Memorial Day Tournaments
· June State Cup Finals
· June Fathers Day Tournament  
· July Regional Tournament (State Cup Champions only)

Uniforms and Equipment
Uniforms must be purchased through Seacoast United's uniform supplier: WeGotSoccer.  Jersey numbers will be assigned by the club, please do not order your uniform until you receive your assigned jersey number. Uniform packages placed with the incorrect jersey number may not be returned/exchanged.  Game uniforms change styles approximately every 2 years, while training uniforms change every year.

Player Equipment provided by the Club includes a Nike soccer ball for training.  

Alternate Players and Moving Within Teams
Coaches may invite players outside of the rostered 18 players to train with the team throughout the season. If a player is worthy of a place on the team, but the team already carries 18 players, the coach may decide to carry the player as a training player. The training player program follows the following criteria:
· Alternate/training players may only join a Seacoast United second team. Only under exceptional circumstances will a player be allowed to be an alternate/training player for a premier team.
· If a position becomes available on the roster, the coach will invite the player to join the team.
· If a position becomes available on a premier/elite team, that position will be given to a player on the second team. Only under exceptional circumstances will a player be allowed to join a premier/elite team without playing for the second team.
· The training players’ cost is determined by the Club Registrar.  This includes all field rentals, coaches expenses, training gear and indoor league fees.
· Alternate/training players will be allowed to train with the team, play in scrimmage games, play and train indoors, and play in tournaments at the coaches discretion. The alternate/training player will not be rostered, and therefore, will not be allowed to participate in outdoor league games.

Double Rostering
Players at SUSC are allowed to double roster with another team. However, any player that double rosters must give SUSC and his or her team priority if and when there is a conflict. This also means that players must allow adequate time to get to their SUSC game to prepare for the game.  Players should not be playing for one team only to show up 10 minutes before kick-off to play for SUSC.  

Try-outs
SUSC has open tryouts every year.  Anyone that wishes to tryout is welcome, and encouraged to do so. The younger players (U9 through U14) tryout in June and begin their season in August. The older players (U15 through U19) tryout in June and begin their season in November/December (the beginning of the older teams season is just prior to Thanksgiving showcase tournaments). The reason for including tryout information is to inform the players/families of how teams are formed. The ’open’ tryout as stated means everyone, who wants to, may come to the tryout. The teams are picked based on playing ability. The top 18 players at the tryout (14-16 for U11/U12 teams, 12-14 for U9/U10 teams) will be offered a place by phone call or email from their assigned coach. Once everyone has accepted a roster spot, the next group of players will be selected following the same process and so on. If a player is not selected for any team, that player is encouraged to continue to play soccer either as an alternate/training player, within another program offered by the Club, or with another club.

SUSC coaches are always given a hard task when choosing teams, and no coach likes to cut a player or not have them play for SUSC. The coaches watch the players and use previous knowledge of the players or ask previous coaches about the players to ensure they have made the right decisions. Players need to understand that playing for SUSC in the past does not guarantee a place on either roster for the next season. The nature of a ’Premier’ club intends to create the best team(s) possible given the talent on display. Throughout the season players are given the opportunity, 100% of the time, to show the coach what they can do and stake their claim as a continual fixture on the team. Players on a ’Select’ (non-premier) team are also given this opportunity to show what they can do, and perhaps move up to the premier & elite teams. Again, playing on a Select team the year prior does not guarantee that the player will move up to the Premier team. However, like many players in the past, those players on a Select team will be given the opportunity to impress and show the coach their worth.

Practice and Cancellation Policy

Outdoor practices
Outdoor practices may be cancelled by either the Directors or by the coach. If the Directors cancel practice it is likely that the weather may be so severe that in the interest of safety for the players it is deemed not suitable to practice. If practice is cancelled by the Directors an email will be sent to the coach and team manager to informing them of the cancellation. The coach and/or the team manager will then inform the team.  If the individual coach cancels practice, then he or she may have decided that the weather is not suitable to practice. A coach may have practiced through one rainy session already that week and decide in the interest of the players safety, that a second practice in the rain may not be beneficial for the players. If the individual coach cancels practice he or she will inform the team and inform the appropriate director.

Outdoor Games
Whether or not a game is cancelled is primarily left to the discretion of the referees or league.   In extreme cases, the Club may decide to close the fields but considering we utilize Field Turf fields, we will not cancel games very often.   If games can be called in enough time prior to a game, an e-mail will be sent out by the coach or team manager to the team.   However, most games are called at the field in the interest of doing everything possible to get the game played.

Indoor Games and Practices at the SUSC Indoor Arena, Granite Fields Indoor Facility, or York Indoor Sports Center
The Director of Operations (Ian Burgess) will be responsible for the cancellation of any indoor league games and or practices. If there is a cancellation, the coach and team manager will be informed. Also a voicemail will be recorded on the general voice mailbox that will give detail of such cancellations. To access the general voicemail dial (603) 926-8444.  Club-wide cancellations and facility closures will also be posted on the main page of the Seacoast United website at www.seacoastunited.com, as well as on the Seacoast United social media accounts (Twitter/Facebook).

Generally, SUSC will do all it can to get information to parents and players about any cancellations. If there is inclement weather parents and player should check with their Coach or Team Manager to confirm if practice is still going ahead before leaving home.  To ensure the correct message gets to the players and parents please adhere to the outline above. Parents should not call the directors looking for information about canceled games or practices. The information will be divulged through the appropriate channels.

SUSC Player Code of Conduct

Players involved in any SUSC team play a vital role in creating the image of a Premier Soccer Organization such as Seacoast United. Therefore, in order to create a positive image and set a good example, each player must adhere to the Athletic Code.  Please note the following:
· The use or possession of alcoholic beverages is prohibited.
· The use or possession of tobacco is prohibited.
· The use or possession of illegal drugs (subject to penalty under law) is prohibited.
· In the interest of safety and fair competition, the misuse of any substance is prohibited as well as the use of any substance that is intended to alter performance.
Violators of any part of the Athletic Code will be asked to leave the Club.

Download the Player’s Code of Conduct by clicking here.


The College Program

Seacoast United pledges to aid and help all of its players in their pursuit to find the college or university that is right for them. There are many variables that each player must address before making their college choice and SUSC will attempt to highlight these variables. Further, SUSC pledges to custom build all efforts towards finding the right college or university with each individual player that requests this help. SUSC staff and coaches will offer their time to act as a sounding board to help players, and where necessary call and speak with college coaches and administrators. This program will attempt to get players thinking about college and then give them the answers they need. For instance players should start to think about the college process at U-16. When playing away games for SUSC players should take time to visit the colleges in that area, and be prepared to meet with and ask questions of administrators. Players should begin to decide where you would like to attend college, do you want to stay in NH or move further a field? Players should decide what interests they have academically. And above all players MUST realize that the effort put forth now in your HS classroom will have a direct bearing on what options will be available to you once you graduate.

The SUSC College Program – click here

Parent/Player Manual Contract

Please download and print, sign, and return to Club Registrar Deb Crow at dcrow@seacoastunited.com