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AYSO Region 71 - Woodland Hills

Keeping The Game Safe, Fair And Fun

Why should you become an AYSO Referee? We need you and will support you with training, mentoring and providing referee gear. 

We can't have games without referees. More importantly, it's rewarding and working with kids is great fun! It is also as many veteran referees like to say: "the best seat on the field to watch the match!"

Referees are critical to soccer - the game can't be played without them. The referee's job is to be the official in charge of the game. That person is the independent arbiter and manager of the game. The referee's authority extends to everyone at the field, including players, substitutes, team officials, spectators, and even assistant referees. 

The referee's No. 1 one concern is to keep the game as safe as possible for the players. While there is risk in all sports, the referee is responsible for minimizing such risks from field conditions, equipment, spectators, and the players. 

The referee is responsible for enforcing the Laws of the Game in such a way as to keep the game safe, fair and fun for everyone: the players, the coaches, the spectators and themselves. A referee interferes with the game as little as possible, avoiding making calls for doubtful and trifling offenses. Referees only make calls for offenses they are sure they saw.  Another veteran referee's quote is "I only call what I see. "

We want our kids to continue to play, and they keep playing as long as it is fun. Referees learn that fun soccer varies from age group to age group of players as they age and game management grows as the kids grow. 

Barry Friedman
Director, Referee Instruction

Interested in Becoming a Referee?

So you're thinking about becoming a referee in Region 71 but you have some questions. Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions:

I don't know anything about soccer, youth sports or refereeing. How can I be a referee?

If you love kids, have a sense of humor, think being a positive role model is important, and can walk around the block without being winded, you have what it takes. Many of our referee volunteers report that once they do their first few games they realize that it's fun and actually exciting to be on the field of play as either referee or assistant referee.

We’ll help you learn what you need to know about soccer and youth sports. Soccer is a simple game and that makes refereeing is mostly common sense and you call what you see.  The challenge is indeed there are 17 laws of the game but our training help make it simple to run a match.

We provide training, equipment and mentoring every step of the way. Region 71/Woodland Hills is fortunate to have some of the best referees and referee instructors in the country with several of us having decades of experience. Our goal is to make your experience as enjoyable as possible.

What's the time commitment?

There's no minimum time commitment once you are a referee other than the matches you sign up to referee.  However, there is a commitment to becoming a referee and unfortunately, Region 71 has no control over this minimum time commitment.  Before you can referee, you do need to successfully complete the following:

- AYSO 8U Referee On-line Course (about an hour)
- AYSO 8U/12U Companion Referee Course that is 4 hours on-line and 4 hours in person usually offered at Bischoff Park (total 8 hours)
- AYSO In-person Regional Referee class for 8U-12U center referee and usually offered in West Hills (e.g., El Camino Real HS) (total 8 hours)
- Concussion Awareness On-line (1 hour)
- Sudden Cardiac Arrest  On-line (1 hour)
- Safe Sport (2 hours)
- Live Scan (1-2 hours depending on location)

For a current schedule of the referee courses, please check here.

Once you are certified, you can volunteer for as many games as you wish via our on-line registration website. You will be able to self-assign yourself as a center referee or assistant referee depending on your preference and game experience. Many of our volunteers do a game or two per week. Games on Woodland Hills fields generally begin as early as 8am and end around 5pm on Saturdays. Depending on the age group, games last between 50 minutes for 10U and up to 90 minutes for 19U matches.

How do I get outfitted as a referee?

Upon completion of your initial referee training for either an 8U Referee or Regional Referee, we will provide you with a referee t-shirt, whistle and coin so you can referee your first matches.  You must provide your own watch to track game time and a pen for the scorecard.  Upon completion of your first 10 matches as a Reginal Referee for 10U and older matches, we will provide you a full referee kit including a jersey, shorts, hat/visor and socks.

What's the minimum age to be a referee?

Based on AYSO National Regulations, we certify youth Regional Referees beginning at age 10-12, so they can referee 6U-8U matches. Usually, we require that players be at least two divisions older than the age division they referee (e.g., player in 12U can referee 8U matches; player in 14U can referee 10U matches). We especially welcome existing players who want to referee. Many of our youth referees earn school community service credits for their time spent refereeing. 

We hear complaints about not having enough volunteer referees. Why doesn't AYSO just pay them?

By its national charter, AYSO is a completely volunteer organization and it is against our by-laws to pay Region, Area and Section volunteers. So, all our coaches, referees and administrators are all volunteers and hence do it from the kindness of their hearts helping our children play outside and enjoy the game of soccer. This is one of the characteristics that makes AYSO unique.

I have a child playing. Will you schedule around his/her games?

Yes. Many of our referee volunteers officiate at the game just before or just after the game their children play. Since we use a self-assignment system, you can choose the location and time that best fits your schedule.

Can I referee my own child's games?

While we make exceptions in 8U (because there are no standings), we don't allow volunteers to be center referees in their own children's games. We also allow volunteers to be assistant referees in their own children's games while letting both coaches know about such situations.  However, we try to fill games with neutral officials first.

The first step in becoming a referee for Region 71 is to complete the AYSO volunteer application online  at the REGISTER NOW button above.  For instructions how to register see this link.

Next, you need to contact our Referee Administrator by completing this online form.

Once the Region 71 Referee Administrator contacts you with your self-scheduling site credentials, logon here to schedule your games.

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AYSO Region 71

23055 Sherman Way #5018 
West Hills, California 91307

Email Us: [email protected]
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