Kick Off Stroud has been on a journey over the past 5 years. We have been trying to do two things at the same time:

1. Work out how we can create real value for our customers- value that is recognised by pupils, teachers, governors and OFSTED.

2. Work out how we can create long term, secure employment in the sports industry in order to grow a workforce for the long term

This has been a slow process, like the creation of a Da Vinci masterpiece painting or Edison inventing the lightbulb. We have come to realise we are trying to revolutionise the way schools deliver PE, sports and well-being. It has been an exciting journey which has brought us into contact with lots of wonderful schools, children and teachers and we finally think we have found the answer. However, before we get to the answer, what was the problem with the way things used to be done?

1. The quality of externally sourced coaches is not high enough or consistent enough
Coaches are poorly trained, poorly line managed and changed from week to week meaning schools have no idea what is happening and the quality was always low.

2. Lots of companies look for quick-win contracts and revenue rather than partnerships and long term plans
It is easy to view working with schools as a smash and grab. Schools are busy and so are companies and so collecting as many contracts as possible and moving from school to school seems the safest option.

3. It is nearly impossible to find full time employment in the industry and so staff turnover was high
Young people become sports coaches, get 3 hours a week work on zero hours and quickly realise they can’t make a living or they take a sports job as a stop gap. Staff leave the industry more quickly then they can be trained.

4. Extra sports provision was bolted on to the school’s curriculum rather than being intertwined with it
Schools have so much to do and sport is not always top of the agenda. Sometimes schools see getting extra coaches as a “tick list”, a job to done and forgotten about. This means plans are not integrated and opportunities are missed.

These four problems are problems for the industry to solve and we think we have come a long way to doing this. Our PE Plus model changes the way a school interacts with a outside partner and changes the game for the coach who is then employed.

Our business now focuses on only 2 types of relationship with schools.

1. To persuade and encourage schools that they should take the time and effort to take on a team member from us for for 4 days a week. To have a new member of their teaching team working with the school under the management of Kick Off Stroud- we call this PE Plus. This takes time and trust to set up but all our pilots prove to us that it works and schools love it.

We think this approach solves the problems traditionally associated with external contractors. What does this mean for our business model?

We have a few long term, significant contracts
We will only have 4 contracts this coming year and will not longer rush out looking for new ones. We will wait to find new partners and not look for new contacts.

We turn down work that doesn’t fit into our two core categories
We know what we do and so we know how to say no to a school. This is not a normal way to operate this type of businesses. Once we have our schedule we lock it down.

We have a full time, permanent contracted set of staff
We pay our staff well and spend our money to train them each year. We invest in training from ex-teachers, current teachers and other groups.

Our work is tied into the school’s curriculem planning and we are part of the team
We know every teacher in our schools by name, we sit in school planning meetings and we take part in the Christmas drinks party!