Junior Referee Program Description and Training Registration

Introducing the Junior Referee Program

The Junior Referee Program (“JRP”) was initiated to help attract and retain new referees by eliminating many of the obstacles of becoming a certified referee.

Register for training to become a Junior Referee here

The Fall 2024 JRP training session will be on Sunday, August 4th, 12:30 pm to 5 pm at Ballenger Creek Park - 5420 Ballenger Creek Pike, Frederick, MD 21703

There is currently a large deficit in the number of referees at all levels. Filling the deficit will take new referees.

While this program is focused on bringing youths into the referee pool, anyone is eligible to begin their referee journey in this program.

The JRP is meant to not only increase the number of available referees, but by only assigning JRP referees to the less complex U9 and U10 games, it will allow the more experienced referees to be available to referee the older, higher level, games.


Introduction to Refereeing in Younger, Simpler, Games

The JRP is designed to help introduce young people to the referee world in a graduated way. No one goes into a new work or learning environment and takes on the most complex demands of the job right away. Likewise, we think that new, young referees should be brought into the program by teaching what is needed to referee the youngest, least complex games. From that perch they can build experience and confidence to move “up the ladder” to become fully certified referees and from there be assigned to higher level games. In addition, each JRP referee will be connected to a senior referee that they can communicate with if they have any questions or concerns throughout their season.  By matching younger referees to the least complex/stressful games and pairing them with a mentor, our hope is the young referees will stay in the game and eventually become fully certified referees.

We understand that becoming a certified referee involves significant upfront time and money before being able to referee. The JRP is designed to minimize the time and financial commitment needed prior to becoming a Junior Referee.


Training Time

The JRP will prepare the participants by presenting a training program that focuses on the knowledge necessary to referee small sided games at the youth level.

The training program includes a four hour in person instruction and an on field practical session.   

This training program is being offered at no cost to participants.


Financial Commitment

To minimize the financial barrier to becoming a referee, the JRP training will be offered at no cost to participants.  In addition, the JRP requires minimal uniform and equipment (JRP jersey, whistle, stopwatch and yellow/red cards). The JRP will reimburse JRP referees up to $40 for their equipment purchases after they have refereed ten games.

Other features of the program include –

-Eligibility: JRP Referees must be 14 when they begin refereeing. You can receive training prior to that.

-JRP Referees will be assigned U9 and U10 games

-JRP Referees will be paid $40 per game (new, updated rate beginning in Fall 2023)

-Monthly payout for games through a payroll system

-Mentor support; each JRP referee will be connected to a senior referee that they can communicate with if they have any questions or concerns throughout their season.

-*Optional* High School service hour credits; up to 12 hours per season (1.5 hrs per game)

-Local, Frederick and Washington County games

-Strong support from league leaders with regard to potential bad behavior from players, coaches or spectators. Zero tolerance and immediate action on any reports

Register for training to become a Junior Referee herehttps://forms.gle/a9ieXdYKW5VgLXh88

For questions please contact Dave Shannon at - dshannonsoccer@gmail.com