International Chess Federation
Tuesday, 19 Dec 2023 09:58
New EDU Program and Titles endorsed by the FIDE Council

FIDE Chess School Award

The 2021 Global Survey identified thousands of schools which promote chess activities. For many of these schools, chess is a sign of prestige used for school promotion. FIDE EDU recognizes the need for recognition for existing schools and the opportunity to encourage other schools to begin or increase their involvement. The FIDE Chess School Award provides an effective means of achieving both goals.

FIDE EDU will use existing connections with federations and individuals interested in chess in education to promote the program. In addition, the EDU website, social media, and other platforms will be used for promotion. 

Several aspects of school chess are examined, and points from 0 to 3 are awarded for each. Applicants are asked to answer each question in as much detail as possible and provide supporting evidence. There are ten questions altogether, and the award is handed out in three levels (Gold, Silver, and Bronze) depending on the applicant school’s score.

Questions are posed about facilities, student involvement, teaching materials as well as the qualification of the chess educators. There is special emphasis on social inclusion, sustainability, and using chess as an educational tool in the classroom. 

In general, schools that involve many students and reach out to many people in activities related to chess as a tool for education have a good chance of receiving an award. As a counter-example, a school that hires a single trainer to coach a handful of children is unlikely to qualify.

Primary and secondary schools (ages 6 to 18) are invited to apply for the FIDE Chess School Award starting January 2024. Applications will be accepted in English, Spanish, and Russian. Other languages may be added at a later stage. Full details about the application process will be available from the FIDE EDU website

New Titles in Chess in Education

FIDE Chess in Education Titles are awarded for life and include a three-year license. For title renewal, the title holder must attend a professional development course approved by FIDE EDU. 

School Instructor

The School Instructor title is not a new one, but the Preparation of Teachers (PoT) course that awards the title has undergone extensive revision to meet the goal of using chess as an educational tool in the classroom. The new PoT course reflects the focus of FIDE EDU on the need to assist teachers and others who work with students in making curriculum connections while integrating chess into regular lessons. In total, 18 POT courses were conducted during 2023, involving 473 participants and 284 SI title holders. Nine courses were conducted online and nine in person. The courses involved participants from 79 countries. The following countries hosted in-person PoT courses: Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Guyana, Namibia, Tanzania, and South Africa.

FIDE School Instructors introduce the school students to the basic chess rules to improve social, academic and 21st Century skills and to increase the number of chess players worldwide. They learn strategies for classroom management along with using mini-games and social chess activities that promote student motivation.

Lead School Instructor

FIDE Lead School Instructors (LSI) lead the courses to certify colleague educators. All lecturer titles obtained prior to 2023 will be automatically converted into LSI titles. The converted lecturer title holders are invited to familiarize themselves with the new PoT course. They will receive a free soft copy of the new PoT coursebook and materials upon request. If lecturers with the converted title would like to achieve a higher level of qualification to train people for the SI title, they must participate in the new Preparation of Lecturers (PoL) course. 

The new PoL course will be launched early in 2024, and it will consist of two parts and give two different qualifications. The first level of qualification will award the LSI title and enable lecturers to train their colleagues and hand out participation certificates to them. 

Senior Lead Instructors 

The objective of the preparation of FIDE Senior Lead Instructors (SLI) is to develop a pool of lecturers who can train educators for the SI title. 

The candidate SLI is required to complete the LSI title and submit a portfolio of evidence of their educational practice.

Successful completion of the second part of the new PoL course will award the SLI title and enable lecturers to teach the PoT course in their main or second language.