Instructor Coordinator Report - March 2014

My main focus has been working on the website upgrades, but there is more going on as we quickly get approach paddling and teaching season!

I’m happy to say that Alan Thomson has been doing significant work done on the draft for the Big Canoe course upgrade. This has been talked about for years. We hope to send a draft to all Big Canoe Instructors by the end of March for their input.

I’m going to propose a few changes for our course policies, which people should think about:

  1. A website based, mandatory registration and advertising only for instructor level courses. Instructor Trainers would have to register a course, get a ‘ticket’ and would need the ticket in order to enter any new certification.
  2. A mentoring system, also assisted by our website, which would ask instructors who advertise courses on our website to choose a yes/no mentoring option. This would display whether they are open to mentoring people wishing to become instructors, or co-teaching for their instructor trainer certification.

These are just ideas at this stage and need discussion.

The IAGM at Hope will include an update on the website (unless this gets shifted to another part of the Paddle Conference) and information on the potential new insurance policy.

The main part of the IAGM will focus on discussion of ideas for upgrades to RCABC programs and policies. I will come with a number of proposed changes and ideas that I’ve gathered over the years and people will divide into workgroups and brainstorm pros/cons and we’ll record them and review them briefly.

Cheers and happy paddling!

Roger Warnatsch

Instructor Search Now Functioning

The instructor search feature is found in the "Courses" menu and is called "Find an Instructor". It allows you to search for instructors of any RCABC type in any combination of zones in BC. Note that only instructors who have chosen to advertise and are current members are searched for and displayed. If you'd like to change that preference, log in to your account in the "Members" menu.

Parks Canada Requests Certification Guidelines from RCABC

Parks Canada, Paddle Canada, RCABC and other provincial canoe and kayak organizations are working on creating guidelines for canoeing certification requirements when leading trips in National Parks. In other words, if a guide, teacher or club were running a trip in a National Park, Parks Canada would require the leader(s) to have a minimum certification level that RCABC will recommend and they will approve at some point in the future. Their stated purpose is to reduce their liability.

Our Vice President and Instructor Coordinator have been working on these guidelines since last year. In late January, 2014 there was a new request from the coastal Parks Canada administration (includes only Pacific Rim and Gulf Islands NPs) . This was triggered through a request to lead a school group canoe trip into a National Park area. Parks Canada has been committed to working with all provincial and national organizations with the goal of determining the best certification guidelines that each organization has to offer.

Certification Logging

The executive has set up a certification logging system for our database. Certifications have always been recorded in the database, but RCABC has never had the option to observe and work with the data in an easy way. While this hasn’t necessarily been problematic, it’s obviously in our best interest to have a clearer picture of our certification activity. The new system will do the following:

  • notify the executive of new certifications or re-certifications by email
  • permanently record the log
  • record details such as the type of certification, date, master/IT, student member # and name, etc.
  • enable the executive to search for and report certification changes for a given time period

The result is that we will have better information on our instructor activity, allowing us to make better decisions in the future. The system started recording in mid-June with 39 certification additions or changes logged to date. Re-certifications accounted for 14 of the logs and most of the rest were new Lakewater Instructor certificates.

River Rescue Course Update

We've received many positive responses to the new river rescue course. The committee met in the summer and has decided on a system to get more people teaching the course. The proposal allows any moving water instructor (not just master instructors) to become a river rescue instructor provided they have taken the RCABC level 1&2 rescue course and must then co-teach a minimum of 1 course ( or more at the instructor’s discretion) with a current river rescue instructor. The database and instructor manual will need to be updated when any changes are sanctioned by the executive.

Back to top