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Mentor Program

In order to participate please email the SDI
To apply to be a mentor, please provide:
- Your name and email address
- Your referee background
- Your experiece working with other referees
To apply to be a referee being mentored, please provide:
- Your name and email address
- Your experience as a referee
- Your goal for the program

The goal of a mentor program is to build a relationship between referee and mentor, and have the pair work towards a long term goal for the referee.  This relationship is a crucial aspect to the program; this is not a “one game relationship” but a longer term relationship. 


Who is eligible?
  • The mentor program is open to all referees registered in NH. This includes all grades of outdoor referees as well as futsal referees.
Why establish a mentor program?

·         With approximately 1100 referees and 60 futsal referees in NH we need a way to identify and help advance referees and futsal referees, that have both the desire and potential to advance. This advancement could be anything from moving to older and more advanced soccer and upgrading to advanced levels.

·         Establishing a long standing relationship allows the mentor to work with the referee over time and establish a plan to advance. This cannot be accomplished by watching the referee for one game and giving feedback. While valuable, this does not allow monitoring the progression or allow for seeing the referee work under different game situations.

·         Classroom training can only be so useful. A mentor program allows individual attention to the specific areas the individual referee needs to improve.


What are the requirements of a mentor?

·      All mentors must be approved by the SRC. In the case that the mentor is an SRC member, the approval is at the discretion of the SRA and SYRA.

·      Mentors will pass the state referee exam annually.

·      Mentors are required to be in good standing with USSF and NHSA.

·      The mentor must have been, at some point in their career, at least one grade level higher than the referee to be mentored.

·      Mentor to referee relationship will be a one year agreement that runs from Jan 1 to Dec 31.

·     When the referee being mentored is a youth referee, the mentor is REQUIRED to meet the parents of the referee prior to any meeting with the referee.

·     On a monthly basis the mentor must report to the SRC via a written status on the progress of the referee.

·     The mentor is NOT expected to be at every game, but must see the referee in person approximately one time a month. In this in person visit, the mentor can NOT be a working member of the referee team.

·      Must be available to speak, possibly via phone or email, with the referee as needed by the referee.

·      The mentor should use his experience and contacts with assignors to help progress the referee along his goals, but not force the mentor’s goals on the referee.

·      Any complaint against the mentor with regards to the referee code of ethics or from the referee being mentored, the mentor will be removed from the program.


What are the requirements of the referee?

·         If the referee is a minor, parent or guardian permission must be received by the SRC. In addition, the mentor will meet with the parent or guardian to establish a relationship.

·         Referee must apply to the SRC to be assigned a mentor. This mentor assignment will be for a period of 1 year, ending on June 30.

·         Referees must attend annual Advanced Referee Training (ART) and participate in the annual USSF fitness test.

·         The referee must be a current NHSA/USSF Referee in good standing, holding a USSF grade of 6, 7, 8.  In the case of futsal referee, the futsal referee must be in good standing.

·         The referee must maintain good standing for the year by attending all required annual training.

·         The referee must establish a goal to work towards and discuss with the mentor. This goal can be anything from moving to older, more competitive games, attendance at state run tournaments or upgrade.

·         The referee must share all assignments with the mentor.

·         At the conclusion of a weekend of referee assignments, the referee will provide a reflection to the mentor aligning with the goals previously established. Focus must include both CR and AR assignments.

·         On a monthly basis, the referee will be observed by the mentor and post-game the two will sit and discuss the game.


What if the mentor to referee relationship is not working?

·         The referee upon acceptance to the program will be given a list of potential mentors. The referee may pick one from this list.

·         If for any reason, on either the mentor, or the referee’s part, the relationship is not working, a new mentor will be assigned by the SRC.


Why can’t a mentor work a game with the referee?

·         If the two are assigned together, that is fine and allowed.

·         The monthly on field observation however cannot be a game when the mentor is a working referee for the game. To effectively watch the referee to provide feedback, especially as the speed and competitive level of the game increases, the mentor must be focused on the referee. If the mentor is also an assistant referee, his focus would be on his AR duties, not the referee’s performance.


Why do mentors need to have been an USSF Referee Grade above the referee?

·         The mentor, by having gone through the work to be upgraded, shows their commitment to the referee program.  This experience in the upgrade process and assessments can be very beneficial to the referee as the referee tries to progress.

·         There are examples of very good referees, who for personal reasons have not upgraded. These referees can provide good feedback; however one of the goals of this program is advance referees to the next level, including upgrading. A referee with years of experience and ability, who has not been through the upgrade process, cannot adequately prepare a referee for a process which the mentor has not experienced.
·         If the referee is a futsal referee, the mentor chosen will also be a futsal referee if possible.

What training do mentors receive?

·         Mentors will be trained on providing feedback and what is expected by USSF of a referee at each grade level.

·         NHSA will hold a “mentoring the mentor” session twice a year, prior to the fall and spring seasons. This will allow further training in delivering feedback as well as what to look for in referees.


Can a mentor hold other roles in NHSA?

·         Yes, a mentor can be an assessor or instructor or any other role in NHSA.

·         At all times, conflict of interest will be avoided. If the mentor is also an assessor, that mentor would be ineligible to assess the referee. In the case of an assessment, the mentor may be at the game, but will NOT associate with the assessor assigned to the game and will not participate in the referee team debrief.


Can a mentor also participate in the program as a referee?

·         YES! The two are independent roles that will not conflict. However time restraints may prevent this on a case by case basis.


Can a referee or mentor be dropped from the program?

·         Yes, there are requirements, both in time and effort, on both parties. The program takes commitment and effort. Should either side not meet the requirements, they may be dropped from the program.