The Ontario Physical Education Safety Guidelines, managed by Ophea, represent the provincial standards for risk management for school boards. They focus the attention of coaches on safe practices, in every sport, in order to minimize the element of risk.
The Safety Guidelines include concussion protocols to help prevent and identify suspected concussions and manage a student’s safe return to learning and physical activity. The Secondary Interschool Safety Guidelines can be accessed here: http://safety.ophea.net/safety-plan/165
OFSAA has worked in partnership with Coaches Association of Ontario, Provincial Sport Organizations and Ophea on the development of an information sheet for each higher risk sport on how to help coaches meet the higher risk coaching qualifications. These are available at the following link: https://www.ofsaa.on.ca/resources/high-risk-sport-guidelines
The following are the new supervision requirements for safety in higher risk activities and require immediate attention:
At least one coach* must possess one of the following coaching qualifications:
- Past experience within the last 3 years as a coach in the activity/sport, having knowledge of the activity (e.g., appropriate skills and progressions) and current safety practices as outlined in the Ontario Physical Education Safety Guidelines.
- A sport specific course(s) as stated on the specific activity page.
- Completion of (sport specific) NCCP Level 1 and/or Level 2 certification in the past.
- Attendance at a clinic or workshop within the last three years provided by an instructor who is knowledgeable of the specific activity (e.g., appropriate skills and progressions), and where safety is addressed as outlined in the Ontario Physical Education Safety Guidelines.
- Effective September 1, 2016 at least one supervisor must have current first aid (e.g., St. John
Ambulance Emergency First Aid or equivalent) that includes CPR plus AED, and spinal injury.
- Specific to tackle football programs: One member of the coaching staff must be trained or (re)
certified in the NCCP Safe Contact module every five (5) years (starting Sept 2016)
OFSAA playing regulations may go above these minimum standards so teacher-coaches are advised to check BOTH the Safety Guidelines AND OFSAA playing regulations.
OFSAA supports the training and development of teacher-coaches. In collaboration with the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC), Coaches Association of Ontario (CAO) and various Provincial Sport Organizations, OFSAA is working to ensure that NCCP certification requirements are:
- Cost effective: CAO offers a bursary program through Quest for Gold and can be found at the following link – https://www.coachesontario.ca/q4g/bursary-program/
- Accessibile: (courses offered in your area). The following funding is available through the Investors Group Coaching Grants: http://www.coach.ca/investors-group-community-coaching-conferences-s12763
OFSAA encourages you as representatives to consult with senior school board administration on an implementation strategy of training and certification in higher risk activities.
For more information feel free to contact the OFSAA office.