Education and training

At the heart of a successful event is the safety and security of the spectators.  At sports grounds this is achieved through a safety management team. A fundamental part of this is education and training of everyone involved.

The SGSA, as the leaders for sports grounds safety in the UK, is involved in ensuring spectator safety qualifications meet high standards.

As noted in the Green Guide, ground management has the responsibility for ensuring that all safety personnel, whether in-house or provided under contract, are competent and, where not already qualified, have received sufficient training to carry out the duties and responsibilities assigned to them.

Spectator safety qualifications

There are three levels of spectator safety qualifications:

  • Level 2 qualification – for learners in the job role of a steward though this could similarly be an attendant, event crew member or usher.
  • Level 3 qualification – for supervisors.
  • Level 4 qualification – for senior safety officers.

New qualifications launched on February 2021, following a review of the previous standards.  The changes reflect the changing threats to sports, event and the wider crowded places sector.

The SGSA has worked with governing bodies, safety officers, venue operators, training providers, government agencies, subject matter experts and trade associations to develop the content of the qualifications.

Assessment strategy for spectator safety qualifications during COVID-19

The SGSA has identified the safety critical elements that learners must be able to demonstrate competency during live events. All other elements may be assessed by alternative methods. Such measures may include filmed or recorded professional discussions, written portfolio evidence and written responses to scenarios.

The SGSA does not wish to be prescriptive in the methods an awarding organisation may wish to use. Such measures are only to be used during the current period where the suspension of live events with spectators due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic limits the opportunity to undertake competence assessment opportunities.

The SGSA would accept that a single assessment at a live event is sufficient in the current circumstances, supported by other forms of assessments. This exceptional assessment strategy used during the period of lockdown for live sport should be suspended upon the return to live sport with spectators.

We have outlined full information in the Assessment Strategy for Spectator Safety qualifications (March 2021) (PDF) document. This strategy will be reviewed as and when necessary.