Grading Policy

The Glenhaven Football Club utilises the following Grading Policy for the purposes of ensuring smooth allocation and integration of all registered players into appropriate teams at skill levels commensurate with individual player abilities.


Non-Competitive (U6, U7, U8, U9)
At these ages the aim of the Club and Association is to develop player skills in a non-competitive environment. As a result each age has no defined divisions but instead are designated by colour or animal. The Club and Association are conscious that player development can be impacted by the skill level of those that they play with and against.
To maximise player development and to minimise changes to teams in future years when teams are graded, players are assessed on grading/orientation day and put into teams where the skill levels of the players are similar. The Club will endeavour to keep players in teams where friendships have been established however this cannot be guaranteed as it is dependent upon the number of players registered in each age group and the division nominations granted by Association. While not graded in a way that is visible to parents and players, HFI will place teams of similar skill in the same division.

Transitional Non-Competitive (U10, U11)
At this age the Club and Association will prepare the players for competitive football. Although still non-competitive, teams are graded into divisions based on skill level.

Competitive (Ages 12 and Up)
Players are graded into divisions with 1 being the highest skill level. Depending on the accuracy of grading in the non-competitive age groups, teams may remain relatively unchanged.


The fundamental objectives of the grading process are as follows (not in any order):

  • To fill teams with players at similar skill levels in positions appropriate for their individual ability and natural bias;
  • To grade players into an appropriate division for competitive football;
  • To grade players in a fair and impartial process by means of thorough trialling of player skill, fitness, overall ability and mental application of the game;
  • Promote club loyalty and competitive participation throughout the process;
  • Give every player fair playing time; and
  • Promote club growth and player development.

Note: Football by nature is a competitive sport. The club also seeks to encourage club loyalty. As with any competitive sport sometimes these two objectives will be in conflict. The club will always endeavour to grade a division 1 team in all competitive age groups with reference to the above objectives. However should a higher graded player wish to play with friends who have been graded into a lower division then the club may place the higher graded player in the lower division. This may not always be possible however due to the number of players in a particular age group.

Grading Process

The grading process outlined below will be followed during grading days for all age groups:

  1. Upon arrival at the ground each player will need to sign in with the designated grading committee member.
  2. The grading committee member will check the player off the registration list and then give that player a number for grading purposes;
  3. The players will then be split into groups to do drills and play games that will assist the graders in the process of forming teams;
  4. During this process there will be between 2 and 4 graders present at all times dependent upon player numbers;
  5. If the age group to be graded involves one of the grading committee’s children then that member will not assess the grading of their own child.
  6. For under 12’s and up the division 1 coach from the previous year may be invited to assist the committee.
  7. Upon completion of grading, the grading committee will submit its results and recommendations to the club board for final approval.

Grading Criteria

The following criteria will be used in grading players into teams:

    1. A player’s skill level, fitness and mental awareness for the game;
    2. Past experience;
    3. Players who they have previously played with; and
    4. Team numbers using the following guidelines:

- U6 – 4 players on field (ideal team size 6);
- U7 – 4 players on field (ideal team size 6);
- U8 – 7 Players on field (ideal team size 10);
- U9 – 7 Players on field (ideal team size 10);
- U10 – 9 Players on field (ideal team size 12);
- U11 – 9 players on field (ideal team size 12);and
- U12 to U18 – 11 Players on field (ideal team size 14).


  1. On grading days parents must remain away from the designated grading area until grading is complete;
  2. Communication must be with the designated committee member on the day, or if post-grading with the club president. Please do not approach the graders;
  3. If player numbers within an age group are either under or over the number required to form a team, the committee, in consultation with parents, will:

    - Attempt to recruit additional players;
    - Place additional players into a lower graded team;
    - Give the player the option to register with another club.

  4. Players must be registered and grade within their correct age group. Playing up will only be allowed if doing so does not unbalance another age group and is purely at the clubs discretion;
  5. Requests to play in a higher or lower division MUST be made in writing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. prior to the grading and is purely at the clubs discretion;
  6. If a player is trialling for a higher age group and has equal skill level with a player in the correct age group then precedence will be given to the player in the correct age group;
  7. Players who have not registered will not be allowed to participate in grading and will not be placed into a team;
  8. Players who come late or do not attend grading without advising the club will be allocated to a team where numbers permit and skill level is appropriate at the discretion of the grading committee;
  9. At the end of the previous year the Director of Coaching will request the coaches of each team to assess the players in his team and give feedback to the club on the players’ skill and improvement throughout the year. This feedback will be utilised by the grading committee in allocating players to teams in the current year.
  10. Placing players into teams is at the sole discretion of the club board, on the advice of the grading committee.

A friendly reminder…

Our club is run by volunteers. They give their time at no cost to the club to help in its running. The club requests that you respect the grading committee’s decisions and do not abuse the members of our grading committee. The board will do what it can to accommodate individual requests, however it may not always be possible or practical to do so. The board understands that mistakes are sometimes made, and in that instance we are more than happy to answer any questions or alleviate any concerns you may have as long as it is done in an appropriate manner and with respect.

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