FAI Primary School 5s open to Kilkenny schools

Kilkenny schools are to the fore in the competition, with 38 schools taking part last year

SCHOOLS

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SCHOOLS

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sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

KILKENNY

SPAR FAI Primary School 5s

SPAR FAI Primary School 5s Ambassadors, Republic of Ireland International footballers Jack Byrne and Amber Barrett, are urging primary schools in Kilkenny to sign up to the fun five-a-side football programme, which is now the largest primary school’s programme of its kind in Ireland.

Open to boys and girls from fourth, fifth and sixth class, the emphasis is firmly placed on fun, inclusivity and fostering a passion for physical activity. SPAR, in its sixth year as supporters of the programme are looking to surpass 2019 participation figures, which saw a record 1,696 schools and 37,448 children take to pitches around the country. Kilkenny schools have been to the fore in the competition with 38 schools taking part in 2019.

Registration for the programme will close on February 14, and county blitzes will kick off at the end of February so act quickly and sign up online. Winning schools progress from county level to regional then provincial finals, with a lucky 24 schools making it all the way to the national finals, which will be held on the hallowed turf of the Aviva Stadium on May 12.

SPAR has been supporting the programme since 2015 and has seen participation figures grow significantly to become the largest primary school’s competition in the country. The number of schools signing up for the participation programme has jumped from 1,064 in 2015 to 1,696 last year.

Particularly pleasing for SPAR has been the increase in the number of girls taking part, 30% of participants in Kilkenny are now female and SPAR, as well as Republic of Ireland Women’s International Amber Barrett, are eager to see this number rise again in 2020.

“The competition is growing at an exponential rate with the standard of football improving each year especially in the female category,” said Robert Moran, Chairman FAI Schools.

“We are excited about the new season and our partnership with SPAR, who have invested significantly in the SPAR5s over the last six years. 2020 should prove to be another thrilling contest for all the participating schools nationwide."

Register for the SPAR FAI Primary School 5s Programme by February 14 at www.fai.ie/primary5.