Updated: Apr 27
Here at the ESPFA we are so grateful to the amazing group of tutors that teach our students and deliver the BTEC course on the education side of the programme.
To showcase some of the excellent tutors the ESPFA boasts, we bring to you the second edition of ‘Tutors Tales’, a half-termly segment where we sit down with some of our tutors and highlight some of their achievements over past few years and share their backstory. In this term’s edition, we spoke to Rushall Olympic tutor Mark Muddyman, Brighouse tutor James Piercy and Frome Town tutor Leah Poole.
MARK MUDDYMAN – RUSHALL OLYMPIC: “ESPFA make an impressive effort to provide all players with a variety of opportunities and exit routes.”
Q) “How does the ESPFA help the students involved with work experience and links to further education or university?”
A) “I have been impressed with the ESPFA programme in all of the above aspects. From providing young players with coaching placements in community programmes to taking players on inspiring day-trips to Wembley & the Etihad Stadium to attend University recruitment events, ESPFA make an impressive effort to provide all players with a variety of opportunities and exit routes.”
Q) “What made you want to become a Tutor when you first started out?”
A) “Like most my ultimate goal as a young person was to play football professionally. When this did not materialise, I pursued both football coaching and teaching/tutoring as potential careers. I have always been passionate about developing young players and developing people. I believe I have a lot of experience and knowledge, specifically within a football environment which I can pass on to young people.”
Q) “What has been your most enjoyable/rewarding moment or experience as a tutor?”
A) “So far, I would say it has been seeing Year 2 students I began working with mid-way through Year 1 receive University offers. It is pleasing to see so many exploring the idea of attending Higher Education.”
JAMES PIERCY – OSSETT UNITED: “Having the feeling that I’ve played a part in their future career motivates me to be better”
Q) “How did you get involved with the ESPFA”
A) “It was a job opportunity I saw after recently completing my teaching degree at Leeds Beckett. I also play myself in the Northern Premier League so there was a clear link for me wanting to get involved with Brighouse Town.”
Q) “What was your first teaching job and what was it like?”
A) “I worked at 2 schools during my university degree, Rishworth and Ermystead’s. One was private and demanded standards similar of a professional club whilst the other had a focus on getting students the top grades. They were different but again, I learnt from everyone.”
Q) “What is the most rewarding thing about being a tutor for the ESPFA?”
A) “It’s all about seeing the lads achieving! That could be on the football pitch or in the classroom. Having the feeling that I’ve played a part in their future career motivates me to be better.”
LEAH POOLE - FROME TOWN: “The banter between the boys in the breaks is a joy to see!”
Q) “What are the main focuses of your lessons?”
A) The main focus of the lessons has been making sure that students are up to date with
their assignments and are feeling confident about what they have done during
lockdown. I have been mindful that some students have really struggled with isolation
and mental health issues so bringing the groups back together has been key. Also
allowing them time to readjust and raise individual needs or concerns with me has also
been important in knowing where extra support may be needed.
Q) “How have your students responded to the recent challenges we have faced due to the Covid-19 Pandemic?”
A) The students have responded very well and just seem to be thankful that we are returning to a form of normality with the course. They understand why they are being asked to do what’s being asked of them. They have been so good at staying on track with their learning, I’m proud of all of them.
Q) “What do you enjoy about teaching in class?”
A) That real life interaction, quirks you don’t necessarily see from behind a computer screen and of course the banter between the boys in the breaks is a joy to see!