VITAL UPDATE ON COACH RELICENSING 2020

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The process for Coach Relicensing is changing significantly – it is vitally important all British Ice Skating Coaches read and understand this update.

As mentioned in the 2019 relicensing letter, for the relicensing date of 1st March 2020 we will have the new database platform live, through which membership, tests and licences will be processed. Your data will be ported to this new platform from a combination of sources, primarily:

Our current Membership & Test database on a Microsoft Access platform
Your licence information and all certification expiry dates from the Google form you populated, as verified by the office for your 2019-20 licence (which is why it was so important that information was accurate)
Other Excel spreadsheets holding information on matters not covered by the above, such as attendance at Field Moves Seminars, discipline-specific IJS Seminars, dates of achieving levels, and other qualifications
We are aware and have always been honest that the systems that have hosted this plethora of information have not been ideal for the purposes intended. That is one of the key reasons why we are investing in a new database platform with one of the industry-leaders: Sport:80.

Another massive benefit is that all Members will control the data we hold on them, so you will be able to update your own contact details, manage and pay for applications through the platform, and see all the expiry dates, pass dates, processing, etc. of all other information relating to you.

It is also clear that between these varying sources of information there will be discrepancies and gaps, which we will work with you to fill and rectify. We ask for your patience on this front – as you know we have thousands of members and this will be new to all of them.

That said, Coach relicensing will be a top priority for us, so once go-live occurs in late-January / early-February, we will be working with you to complete this by 1st March.

Important points to note on this are:

If you were licensed for 2019-20, your coaching qualification will automatically be added to the new platform. The generic Figure Skating qualifications of Level 1 Assistant Coach, Level 2 SkateUK and full Level 2 will be ported directly from one data source to another. Discipline-specific qualifications for Speed Skating (all levels) and Figure Skating (Levels 3-5) will need to be added manually by the office team, which will happen either just before go-live or just after. This is because the new platform will have better structures in place to identify, for example, the specific disciplines in which higher level qualifications were achieved, something not concisely aligned with existing data sources.
Coaches who were not licensed during 2019-20 but who plan to re-license from 1st March 2020 will need to contact the office to have their ‘Qualification’ added, so that the ‘Licence’ can be built on to this. The system will work on numerous dependencies, so having the relevant qualification will be a pre-requisite for having a valid licence
Similarly, valid qualifications in First Aid, Safeguarding / Child Protection and DBS / PVG, as well as attendance at the Coaches’ Convention as applicable to your coaching level, will be required for a current coaching licence. Existing expiry dates for those licenced in 2019-20 will be automatically added, but images of the certification will not. For future submissions of certified qualifications, coaches will upload these images complete with expiry dates for the office to approve (more guidance on using the system will follow – this is just to make you aware that for the purposes of the transfer, having the expiry dates will be sufficient)
To elaborate on the way in which expiry dates will work, mentioned in the 2019-20 relicensing letter, coaches will be responsible for keeping their required certified qualifications updated themselves. The platform will send them multiple reminders as these certificates are due to expire, starting as far out as we think necessary (currently we are considering 3 months, though if a practical First Aid or Safeguarding course needs to be done, we may start these reminders at 6 months advance).

Our current processes have meant that to exercise due diligence, coaches needed to evidence required certification to be valid until 1st July at the point of the 1st March relicensing date to be licensed for the period March to the following February. Now, to emphasise, ALL qualifications will need to be up-to-date at ALL times, otherwise the coach will drop into an invalid state, the licence will not be active, they will not appear on the new Coach Finder section of the new website, and any relevant insurance will not be valid.

Ultimately, this does not change the requirements for relicensing for 1st March 2020 – Coaches simply need to have their certification in order. We therefore advise that you start the process of checking immediately, and recommend you do this by consulting the following sources:

Your own records of your certificates; failing which
Your submission through Google Forms (to which you will have access of a copy) of expiry dates for your 2019-20 licence; failing which
Your e-mails sent to us with copies of your certificates attached; failing which
Contact the office by e-mail to coaching@iceskating.org.uk or calling 0115-9888-060, but ONLY after methods 1-3 have been exhausted!
Another couple of crucial changes will be that there will no longer be a fixed licensing year of March to February, nor will membership need to be paid at the same time as the coaching licence. The reality for those licensed in 2019-20 is that their renewal of membership and relicensing date will stay as 1st March for the vast majority of coaches because by keeping things up-to-date will ensure continued membership and licenses, but those returning from a break or new to coaching will apply for an annual licence at any stage during the year. No more pro-rata payments, just a 12-month fee for a 12-month licence.

This will also show more clearly the coaching licence fee, separate from the standard membership fee, with the number of options simplified as there will not be separate Life Membership licences as they simply will not need to renew their membership! Coaches will also have access to invoices for all payments made, which will be automatically available on the platform without needing to request one from the office.

This is obviously a lot of information to digest. The team in the office have been testing the new platform and we assure you it is easy to navigate and will result in a much, much better experience for our members, especially our coaches who need to interact with us on a more frequent basis.

Please share this with all fellow coaches at your rink(s) and in your circle of contacts. It is a massive positive and one which British Ice Skating is proud to be sharing with you. Ultimately the platform will also be used for Event entries, club affiliations, rink-finders and many more things besides. We will also be separately communicating about the method of application for National Tests and Competitive Test passes, both of which still require coach authorisation, both of which will be much quicker and easier to apply for, validate, and process.

We look forward to the new database providing improved service and functionality to all our licensed Coaches in 2020!

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