they enter the real world and try to get a job or form a relationship they will find that failure is normal. Instead of preparing them for this reality, we are setting them up to be shocked by it.
I have just hung up my whistle after four years as coach of my eldest son’s primary school football team. To pinch a line from the great Gideon Haigh in relation to his team of toiling amateurs at the South Yarra Cricket Club, my appointment was a triumph of availability over ability. Despite having no talent as a footballer, I found the role terrifically enjoyable. Weirdly, it was often at its most rewarding when things went wrong. Like every junior sports teams there were a few times when our team either faced or instigated episodes of physical violence, racial abuse and bullying. There were occasional tensions within the team between the more talented kids and the battlers, or kids who were dealing with