The NASA in-town referee program is an opportunity for boys and girls in grades 6-12 to referee G2, (grades 1-2) and G4 (grades 3-4) games. Referees are required to attend NASA’s Referee Training Program and any ongoing trainings held for the education and benefit of the referees. North Andover referees are trained in The Laws of the Game and coached on how to apply them while officiating in-town NA games. After completing the classroom portion, participants are paired with a partner and Mentor and receive ongoing field instruction and experience refereeing NASA’s in-town games. Referees and Mentors are paid a per game stipend at the end of the season. As referees gain experience and skill, they are assigned higher level games and encouraged to obtain USSF certification.
After some time in the program, referees typically seek to become Mentors to oversee assigned games of the more inexperienced referees. They are required to attain their Grade 8 certification at age 14 and attend all ongoing Mentor trainings. Mentors provide real time game feedback and assist referees as they gain greater confidence and exposure to refereeing NASA in-town games.
NASA accepts new referees every Spring, with announcements made in late February. Participants must be 12.5 years old (no older than 8th grade), live in-town and currently play soccer. At 14, referees are encouraged to become Grade 8 certified which allows refs to officiate travel games in the ECYSA. NASA will reimburse the registration fee for the Grade 8 license. (Sign up for the course at www.massref.net). Grade 8 referees can do any youth travel games through G12.
If you are interested in becoming a referee, please contact Scott Hammond at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ADVICE TO REFEREES
1. Be punctual. You should arrive at the field at least 15 minutes prior to scheduled kick-off so you have time to check the field and check players’ equipment and still kick-off on time.
2. Look official. Wear your referee jersey & badge. Tuck jersey in. Wear black shorts and socks and proper footwear. In cold weather, wear layers UNDER your jersey, and sweatpants/windpants (preferably black) over your shorts. Gloves and soft caps are allowed in cold weather.
3. Bring your stuff. In addition to proper uniform, make sure you have your WHISTLE, WATCH,
PENCIL/PEN, GAME SLIPS and a water bottle and snacks BEFORE you leave home.
4. Use the Mentor. Check in with the on-field mentor. They are there to help and support you. Ask
questions and listen to their advice. Ask them for feedback and suggestions at half time and at the end of the match.
5. Introduce yourself to the coaches. Keep your head up, look them in the eye when you say Hi. Do not mumble or stare at the ground.
6. Know the rules. Make sure you know time, duration, restarts and other special rules for each
NASA age group as well as the “Laws of the Game”.
7. Practice using your whistle and hand signals at home before your match. Don’t wait until you have to make your first call on the field. Blowing your whistle loud and confidently.
8. Try to relax and have fun. You will make mistakes, just like players and coaches will. Every game is a new learning experience for everyone. If you realize you made a mistake, admit and change your call to the correct one if the game hasn’t re-started yet.
9. Show effort. Being in the correct position will allow you to make the right calls, and will give
coaches and spectators confidence in your calls.
10. Call what you see, but do not guess or assume anything if you didn’t see it. Even if the coach, player or spectator tells you about it.
11. If you have a problem with a spectator or coach, ask the other coaches or the mentor to help. NASA has very strict policies about coach and spectator behavior toward referees. If you feel intimidated and uncomfortable, it is OK to leave the match and let the coaches handle refereeing. Any incidents must be reported to a NASA director. They will support you all the way.
12. Remember the 3 most important things about refereeing, SAFE-FAIR-FUN, and you will do a great job.