Expert Group on Skills and HR: the Guidelines are almost ready

On 4-5 November, the fifth meeting of the European Commission (EC) Expert Group on Skills and HR Development in Sport (XG HR) was held in Trento, Italy. ENGSO has observer status in the group and was represented by Executive Committee member Sara Massini.

The meeting was hosted by the University of Trento parallel with the 22nd Forum and Assembly of the European Network of Academic Sports Services (ENAS).

The meeting started with the presentation of some research results on dual career done by universities and by our partner, the European Athlete as Student Network (EAS). Then, Agata Dziarnowska from the European Commission’s Sport Unit facilitated a discussion on the guidelines regarding the basic requirements in the skills and competences for coaches. Sara Massini brought forward some vital aspects that should be considered for the guidelines regarding the basic requirements in skills and competences for coaches, including:

- the need to consider that most coaches are not paid workforce but volunteers; - gender perspectives need to be properly addressed in the document, in order to mainstream gender equality in all aspects of sport; - aligning the terminology with the Council Recommendation on Key Competences for Lifelong Learning.

The document is currently under preparation and will be published in January 2020 after two rounds of consultation.

Sara Massini with representatives of the EC: Agata Dziarnowska  and Yves Le Lostecque
Sara Massini with representatives of the EC: Agata Dziarnowska and Yves Le Lostecque

“The discussion was very interactive and the representatives of member countries were quite experts on the topics in their country. The main aspects discussed were related to definitions and wording, such as the definition of coaches, instructors, knowledge and skills. The debate was short and effective. The atmosphere was very relaxed. The participants seemed satisfied with the work done”, recalls Ms Massini.

After the discussion, the meeting continued with Prof. Marc Theeboom's presentation of the research results of an Erasmus+ project on employability and skills in sport. MONITOR (Monitoring and Evaluation Manual for Sport-for-Employability Programmes) is a collaborative partnership where ENGSO Youth is a partner. Finally, a presentation was held on dual career in the Italian sport system by Valentina Marchei, Olympian figure skater.

The XG will continue its work on the guidelines and will publish the final document early next year. The last meeting of the XG will be held in April 2020 in Estonia.

ENGSO representatives were present also in the previous XG HR meetings that took place in February 2018 in Bath, UK, in July 2018 in Split, Croatia, in November 2018 in Salzburg, Austria and in May 2019 in Lisbon, Portugal.