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Launch of Female Umpiring AcademyWednesday, March 13, 2024 - 3:20 PM

A groundbreaking Female Umpiring Academy titled “Umpire Your Way” has been launched by the Hon. Sue Ellery MLC Minister for Finance; Commerce; Women's Interests in a bid to improve the connection of WAFL, Country, Senior Community and Junior Community Female umpires across WA.

The project, supported by the Department of Communities, follows a report titled “Girls and Women in Australian Football Umpiring” which highlights the potential benefit of gender-segregated training groups, along with specific coaching and support for female umpires.

The academy also aims to foster friendships and relationships in a bid to retain female umpires, particularly through the challenges of officiating in junior and community football.

Courtney Gibson, Umpiring Clubs Specialist at the West Australian Football Commission, has been encouraged by the response ahead of the Academy’s first session.

“We've had such a great level of engagement so far, it's really exciting to see the women and girls align with our purpose and direction,” said Gibson.

"At this stage we have 50 female umpires register for the academy and currently we have only 18 at the highest state league level.

“I'm so excited to see women and girls from diverse backgrounds attend our sessions". 

There are five key objectives for the “Umpire Your Way Academy.”
•    Increase female participation and female coaching staff.
•    Improve the experience of being female in umpiring.
•    Provide a support network for female umpires.
•    Improvement in confidence on match day.
•    Engagement of leaders in WAFL and PFL to consider coaching or mentoring.

Session Dates:

Second Session:
Date: Sunday 21 April 2024
Activity: Umpire Your Way Skills Day
Location: Ernest Johnson Reserve, South Perth.
Register your attendance here.

Third Session:
Date: Thursday 16 May 2024
Time and Location: 6pm at Ernest Johnson Reserve, South Perth.

Fourth Session:
Date: Thursday 20 June 2024
Time and Location: 6pm at Ernest Johnson Reserve, South Perth.

Fifth Session:
Date: Thursday 15 August 2024
Time and Location: 6pm at Ernest Johnson Reserve, South Perth.
Final Group Session.

Sixth Session:
Activity: AFLW Match Day Experience
Date: October (TBC).

Sessions will be available online for those in regional areas.