2021 PRPS Webinar - Vetting and Training Youth Coaches: The Bar has been Raised
CEU Fee: $5 Members/$10 Non-members
For years, surveys of youth sports program directors have highlighted that the #1 “Opportunity for Improvement” is to better train and prepare volunteer coaches. Unfortunately, volunteer-led and resource starved organizations have made little progress in this area. Several states have passed legislation that places specific coach vetting/training requirements on youth sports organizations, and more states are expected to pass legislation in the next few years. In 2018, a federal law was passed creating Safe Sport, an independent organization chartered with creating and administering abuse prevention training, as well as overseeing claims of abuse in Olympic Sports organizations and many types of youth sports organizations. The expectation for properly vetting and training youth coaches has clearly risen, and as a result the risk of offering youth sports programs has risen as well.
The rate of youth sports “incidents” (including negative behaviors, injuries, and various forms of abuse) has continued to rise, garnering national attention. Recent national and state initiatives to improve coach vetting and training have resulted in mandates for specific action in an increasing number of youth sports organizations. While several segments of the youth sports market have made dramatic improvements in vetting and preparing youth coaches, in general programs offered by recreation departments have made less progress. Participants in this session will have an opportunity to learn how the landscape has changed, how legislation (including the Safe Sport Act) affects them, and what actions they can take now to address the growing risk they face in offering youth sports programs. Participants will be given a framework to help them assess their risk and identify potential actions to improve their programs. Time will be allocated to a group discussion of the risks, challenges, and best practices involved in youth coaching. A real time survey of participants will be used to help drive this discussion, and will enable participants to see how they “stack up” in these areas vs. other agencies in their state.