The ECF has recently set up the Junior Development Pathway. This aims at providing a structured approach for the development of juniors from school clubs at one end to the Accelerator Programme at the other. In between these, there are three levels of recognised junior organisation – Junior Clubs, Centres of Excellence, and then Academies. Roughly, the first should correspond to local organisations, the second to a regional one and the third to national-level organisations.
The first applications were received from September 2022. These were evaluated together in December 2022 with the result that eight applications were approved for Junior Club status and one for Academy status. The successful applicants are shown at https://www.englishchess.org.uk/Juniors/development-pathway-2/
More applications are welcome in 2023. The intention is to consider applications roughly four times a year, on a gathered field basis.
— Joseph Conlon