USATF Coaches Registry sets high ethical standards

05-18-2010

Contact:
Tom Surber
Media Information Manager
USA Track & Field
317-713-4690

INDIANAPOLIS - USA Track & Field on Tuesday unveiled its groundbreaking Coaches Registry, which will identify and acknowledge coaches who represent the profession's highest standards.

The USATF Coaches Registry was originally conceived by the Coaches Advisory Committee to set standards for coaches affiliated with USATF. It includes a four-pronged process, which will create a registry of coaches who have demonstrated the ethics, honesty and trustworthiness necessary for endorsement by the national governing body of the sport.

The USATF Board of Directors, consistent with its efforts to foster a culture of ethical, transparent, and accountable behavior throughout the organization, has directed the USATF National Office to work with the pertinent committees to develop and implement the Coaches Registry. The centerpiece of this program is a comprehensive Code of Conduct for Registered Coaches.

Being a Registered Coach will provide a designation to coaches around the country that will flag them as among the most ethical and respected in their field and will carry with it certain rights and privileges not available to those who are not Registered Coaches. Most immediate is that only USATF Registered Coaches will be eligible for obtaining a coaching credential at the 2010 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

"No group is more important to the development of our athletes than coaches," said USATF CEO Doug Logan. "As the national governing body, USATF has the responsibility to perform a vetting process that gives our top coaches the recognition they deserve and provides athletes with peace of mind that their coaches meet certain ethical and professional standards. Many individuals and groups with USATF have worked together to develop a Registry system and a code of conduct that will best serve the interests of athletes and coaches alike."

"It was a daunting task to come up with something that would cover coaches from youth track all the way through elite track and field," said Curtis Frye, President of the United States Track Coaches Association and head coach at the University of South Carolina. "It took a lot of work and we've gotten this off the ground, and we're going to have, what I call, a functioning licensing program."

To become a Registered Coach a coach must, among other requirements, agree in writing to accept and adhere to the principles, values, and strictures embodied in the Code of Conduct. While the USATF Board of Directors is fine-tuning the language of the Code, it has served notice that only coaches who are eligible under that code and who agree to adhere to its values, as reflected in the draft posted as a prong of the USATF Coaches' Registry, will be credentialed at the 2010 USA Outdoor Championships.

The following requirements must be completed and approved for a Coach to appear on the USATF Coaches Registry:

1. Current membership in USATF

2. An application that lists current affiliation in the coaching profession

3. Acceptance of the Code of Conduct

4. Passing of a Background Screen

The background screen will be provided by National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI). The fee for a background screen will be $35 and is valid for two years. The applying coach is responsible for the cost of the screen. NCSI is the only organization recommended and licensed by the National Council of Youth Sports to use the "Recommended Guidelines for Background Check Screening in Nonprofit Youth-Serving Organizations." NCSI provides a comprehensive search with the assurance of the highest quality information available, and it works confidentially with each client during the search. The following are included in the comprehensive search:

1. Identity verification

2. National Criminal database search

3. OFAC terrorist database search

4. Sex Offender registry search of all available states

5. At least one county search of residency within the last five years

The USATF Coaches Registry is posted on the USATF website. Members of the Registry will be eligible for the following programs supported or managed by USATF:

1. All benefits of USATF membership

2. Selections for international team staffs

3. Compensation from USATF or USOC athlete support programs designated for coaches

4. Participation in USATF High Performance programs

5. Selection for participation in USATF sponsored Coaching seminars, clinics, and Coaching Education programs

6. Credentials for USATF events through the approved credentialing process for a particular event

Coaches who are not on the USATF Coaches Registry are not eligible for the above programs.

Registered coaches will be notified every two years of the renewal process for the Registry. Any person misrepresenting information in the application may be disqualified and subject to a review by the Enforcement Committee prior to reinstatement.

For more information on the USATF Coaches Registry, or to begin the application process, visit:http://www.usatf.org/groups/Coaches/registeredCoaches/index.asp