CSC Yorkshire Report for Yorkshire Chess Association AGM on
I am grateful to the Yorkshire Chess Association for giving
me the opportunity to inform members about the work of Chess in Schools and
Communities (CSC) in Yorkshire. We want to grow links between Yorkshire
schools and communities with local chess clubs. I apologise that Iíve not
been able to come today but will aim to come next year.
I moved up to York with my wife and children from London a
few years ago and we are very glad we did.
CSC is a UK charity whose mission is to improve childrenís
educational outcomes and social development by introducing them to the game
of chess. Founded in 2009, we now teach in over 300 schools and support 500
more nationwide. We also organise a world-class tournament - the London
What CSC Does
CSC delivers chess via curriculum time lessons or through the
traditional extra-curricular chess club. Children are taught by one of our
trained tutors, who all have Enhanced DBS clearance, progressing from the
rules of the game to foundational tactics and strategy over 30 weeks. They
acquire a life-long skill, opening up an affordable and enjoyable game of
limitless depth. Schools receive chess sets, teaching and learning
resources and entry to school activity days at the London Chess Classic.
Staff are offered free places on tutor training courses, enabling them to
lead the lessons.
We subsidise our offering but ask schools for a contribution
to our costs. We pay our tutors. Alongside direct teaching, we provide a
range of support to schools, including free chess sets, tutor training and
use of the CSC curriculum. We also run a growing network of chess clubs in
teaches chess at 22 schools in Bradford, Hull, Leeds, Wakefield and York.
Our tutors go into schools once a week over the year. Our aim is to improve
children's educational outcomes and foster their social development by
introducing them to the game of chess in schools and communities. If
children become strong players that's a bonus!
have supported chess at 48 other schools in Yorkshire.
have supported a number of volunteers running clubs in schools and
libraries. We have taught out curriculum at schools there and I want to get
it going again.
14 schools. A large part of this is due to the support of the local
MP Rachel Reeves. We started at our first secondary school.
ran a stall at the Festival of Education in May. It went well and we talked
to schools and teachers. There were a lot of interesting talks. Iím keen to
get things going in Sheffield again and weíre planning a training course
in contact with a school governor who runs a chess club. I visited and helped
him run a tournament last summer and weíre planning another event. I used
ďSevillaĒ a free downloadable pairing programme which I can recommend.
have a new school there with a proud chess tradition which has going well.
In November the local MP, Mary Creagh, visited and gave a simul with our
Chief Operating Officer. I also organised for the Yorkshire Junior Chess
Association to hold one of their Grand Prix events there.
have two clubs in York.
We now have 14 library/community projects in Yorkshire.
Other libraries have requested to join as a result of talking to their
colleagues who have started clubs. Iíve had success recruiting volunteers
with ďDo ItĒ a national volunteer service. We have also used social media.
I have some posters that libraries use to advertise the clubs and for
We started two clubs in Wakefield. The manager of Walton and
two members of staff from Normanton came to the Leeds Training course. Both
are going well and have run or are planning to have tournaments.
We have a new club at Keighley Library too. We had a keen
volunteer who decided that he needed to be paid shortly before starting
which was pain. The library started the club by putting out the boards and
Iíve found a possible replacement. Wetherby are keen to start a club too
and York are looking to restart the library clubs there.
I was really pleased that CSC has started teaching chess at
Leeds Prison in May (the Governor told me not to call it Armley!). Itís
taken a while to set up and get the tutor trained but Iím glad we have.
Itís a 3 hour session 3 times a month. We are keen to work with more
prisons. So if anyone has any contacts or is interested in teaching in
prisons please get in touch with me.
London Chess Classic
We had 4 Yorkshire schools come down to the Classic, one
more than last year. Two from Bradford, one from Leeds and one from York.
They all had a wonderful time and thoroughly enjoyed it.
Through its fundraising CSC was able to heavily subsidise
the schoolís travel costs. I was also really grateful to the York Evening
Chess League which paid for half of the travel costs of the York
school. The League is very aware of the need to support the younger
generation and Iím really pleased that several of the children at St
Wilfridís have said they will join the junior section of the York Chess
Club. We have invited players from the club into school so the
children can thank them and the children have written letters/drawn
I was pleased that Peter Cloudsdale was able to come down
and see what a great event the LCC is.
Our tutor, Sean Marsh, did a great training day in May in Leeds.
We had a good turnout and it generated a lot of interest. The feedback was
extremely positive and we have several potential new tutors as a result.
We are looking to have a number of Leeds/Bradford
interschool summer tournaments/matches. And the first CSC Leeds/Bradford
Summer Tournament on 11th July.
We ran the UK Chess Challenge at several schools. The York
Evening League paid the entry for a York school which helps foster links
between schools and the chess community. So please think about linking you
club with a local school or schools. I would be very happy to help with
CSC has been approached by an Italian school for an online
match and Iím trying to set something up with a York school.
A Leeds Library is interested in running a 10 week course
for older people and I am keen to do this elsewhere in Yorkshire. I
initially met with the library to discuss a volunteer led library club and
the manager really liked the idea of a course for Older People. They have
applied for funding and we waiting to hear back.
We are looking to work with more Yorkshire schools and
community groups. We are also looking for more tutors. If you have any
questions please contact me.
CSC Yorkshire Coordinator Ė firstname.lastname@example.org