Have questions about our organization and curious what we’re all about? We’ve put together a list of FAQs that may answer some of them.
1. What is the West Milford Youth Soccer Organization?
We are a group of parent volunteers holding various board member positions as well as division head positions. The board members consist of the following positions: President, Director of Finance, Director of Competition, Director of Operations, Director of Communications, and Director of Training and Referee. Together with Division Head Volunteers, Volunteer Coaches and referees, we provide a program that’s informative, involves fun competitiveness and allows for an enjoyable and fun setting for both players and parents.
2. What do the volunteers do?
Along with the West Milford Parks and Recreation Department, we help with most of the logistical management tasks of creating a robust rec soccer program for children in grades K – 8. Our involvement includes searching for volunteer coaches, coach training, division and team creation, scheduling, equipment distribution, soccer field readiness, and addressing any parent concerns if they arise.
3. Are the members paid?
No. Members are volunteers as well as the division heads and coaches. They are not employed by the town of West Milford. However, in recognizing the monumental task in managing a large program with many players and volunteer coaches, the organization was created to help the Parks and Recreation Department organize the rec soccer program to maintain a high level of success. The only paid personnel are the municipal employees in the Parks and Recreation Department. As volunteers, we have a collective goal and vision to help provide a successful program. The board is continuously looking for new volunteers that share in our continued vision. Our hope is that new volunteers can join us as their children become involved at a young age to carry the torch as parents opt out of volunteering when their children age out of the program at the high school level.
4. How do I register my child to participate in rec soccer?
Technically the program along with all fee proceeds are managed by the Parks and Rec Department. Therefore, the registration process is managed by this department. All parents are encouraged to create an account on the Community Pass Portal located online at https://register.communitypass.net/westmilford. This will ensure that you receive updated emails from Parks and Rec on not just upcoming open registration for Rec Soccer, but for any of the programs hosted by Parks and Rec.
5. How old does my child have to be to play Rec Soccer?
Our program is designed for children in Kindergarten to 8th grade (sometimes we open registration to 9th grade). Your child’s date of birth will usually determine what division he or she will play in. We have 5 Divisions as follows:
Mini Striker 5 – 6 Years (Kindergarten / 1st grades)
Super Striker – 7 – 8 Years (1st / 2nd grades)
Stopper – 9 – 10 Years (3rd / 4th grades)
Sweeper – 11 – 12 Years (5th / 6th grades)
Keeper – 13 – 14, possibly 15 Years (7th, 8th, sometimes 9th grade)
6. My child has never played soccer before, can I still register my child?
We encourage all children of all ages in grades Kindergarten to 8th Grade to register. Our organization has adopted US Soccer guidelines as the foundation of any practices and game play so that there may be an easier transition for those players who decide to play other more regimented programs like Travel Soccer for example or if they decide to tryout for soccer at the high school level.
7. What days are the games and practices scheduled for?
Game and practice schedules are provided approximately shortly before the season begins. Games are typically on Saturday mornings and one week night game. Saturday game schedules may extend into the early afternoon depending on the number of teams playing on a specific day. Practice schedules are at the discretion of the volunteer coaches and will revolve around their personal and work schedules. Coaches will notify all parents of practice schedules soon after the teams are created.
8. My child plays baseball, lacrosse, football or another sport. Can I still sign up for soccer?
We understand that many parents want to encourage their children to play multiple sports in a given season. Unfortunately, the practice and games schedules cannot be modified for one or two players who cannot make games or practice sessions. Like other sports, soccer is team orientated sport and we encourage all players to attend as many practices and games to help maintain a high level of good sportsmanship between the players. Please keep this in mind when registering as registration fees or non refundable. Your volunteer coach may have a schedule that works around his or her personal / work schedule and may not be able to provide a schedule for players that are registered to play other sports or cannot make a practice session or game due to other sport commitments. We encourage a fair and balance schedule for all players committed to the sport.
9. Are coaches / co-coaches paid?
No. Coaches are also volunteers typically with children in the program. Most parents start out when their children who are just beginning the fundamentals of soccer skills in Kindergarten through 2nd grade and proceed to remain coach volunteers as their children get older and better at playing soccer. Coaches and Co-Coaches will have their children on their teams.
10. Can I volunteer as a coach or co / coach?
We would like to encourage many parents to help us run this program. We can have upwards of 300 or more children playing from grades Kindergarten to 8th grade. We provide basic comprehensive coach training by more experienced coaches and new coaches soon learn the ropes of basic game play skills and realize that most of the games will also have a referee during game play to help players continue to understand game rules.
11. How do I register as a volunteer coach? (UPDATED FOR COVID 19)
First, when registering your child, indicate in the registration form that you would like to volunteer when completing the form. All new coaches must undergo a fingerprint and background check for obvious safety reasons, with the town of West Milford. The background check application can be found at https://westmilfordyouthsoccer.org/backgroundcheck . You can also call Parks and Rec Department at 973-728-2860 for more information. We encourage participation from parents who can help us make the program a continued success. (Note: During the COVID 19 Pandemic, the fingerprinting process has been waived for the time being but may commence at a later date).
12. Do you use a penalty card system where yellow or red cards are used to penalized players?
No. Rec Soccer does not use a penalty card system to penalize players. In the end, we want our program to be a fun and enjoyable program for children as well as parents.
13. Where are games played?
West Milford has a number of soccer fields earmarked for soccer game play. You can find our field locations on our site at https://westmilfordyouthsoccer.org/fieldlocations/ . The fields are usually designated to specific divisions. Mini Striker / Super Striker Division- Apshawa Fields, Stopper Division – Farrell Fields located by the recycling center, Sweeper Division – Nosenzo Pond field near West Brook Elementary, Keeper Division – Farrell Field or Nosenzo Pond Field depending on schedule.
14. Does Rec Soccer play other towns?
No, except for Keeper Division (13/14 year olds). Recently as of 2019 and prior to the COVID 19 pandemic, because our Keeper Division usually consist of 2 or 3 teams of 15 players each, we’ve changed the game format to a “Cross Town” program where we have been allowed to play other rec soccer teams in other towns mostly located in Sussex County. We have learned that the players truly enjoy this format without all the formalities of a travel program. Parents also soon become accustom to this format and also enjoy the fun competitiveness of the sport.
15. My child also plays Travel Soccer. Can he or she still register? (UPDATED FOR COVID 19)
We understand that some town programs do not allow travel soccer players from registering however, West Milford currently does not have this restriction except for Keeper Division (7th / 8th grades) if this division is involved in a cross town program. If Keeper Division players are involved in game play with other towns, then we have to adhere to the No Travel Soccer Player restriction since other towns do not allow travel soccer players.
However, if we find that we are not going to participate in a cross town program for an upcoming season, particularly due to COVID restrictions, we will allow travel soccer players to register. In this case, this division will operate as a Pick Up Style program where players are randomly chosen to be on separate teams as they sign in.
When registering your 13/14 year old child online, you will be asked if he or she plays Travel Soccer in which case you may be notified that your child may not be able to participate in the Keeper program if we are allowed to play soccer with other town rec teams. If we learn that we will not play in a cross town program, then the Travel Soccer question will not be asked for the current season registration process.
16. Who can I contact if I have other questions or concerns about Rec Soccer?
First, you can contact the Parks and Rec department directly at:
Phone – 973-728-2860
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
You can also contact West Milford Youth Soccer Organization at WestMilfordYouthSoccer@gmail.com.