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Old 05-16-2017, 10:13 PM
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Matt Romanowski
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Default New Instructor Certifications

Ross had mentioned this when he was in Massachusetts last month. The Motorsport Safety Foundation is starting an instructor Certification program. I think this will be really great for instructors, students, and the organizations.

Check the program out at http://www.motorsport-safety.org/med...rmance-driving

I'm signing up now!
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Old 05-16-2017, 11:23 PM
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The concept has potential. But who provided input in setting it up? In order to have credibility and 'official' status, a certification program like this should have input and acceptance from PCA, BMW CCA, Chin, HOD, etc.
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Old 05-16-2017, 11:32 PM
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Very interesting. I plan to look into it and will likely pursue.

I agree Manifold - it would be good to understand who is behind it. I saw Ross Bentley in there but don't have time right now to scour the web site.

I also wonder if they plan to charge dues for each level, and if those dues are required annually.

How long is certification good for? If you are away from the sport - do you need re-certification? I'm sure more questions will surface.
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Old 05-16-2017, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Manifold View Post
The concept has potential. But who provided input in setting it up? In order to have credibility and 'official' status, a certification program like this should have input and acceptance from PCA, BMW CCA, Chin, HOD, etc.
I believe all of them had input and will be supporting the program. I'm sure we'll know pretty soon. Personally, I think it's a great thing.
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Old 05-17-2017, 12:00 AM
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Interesting. I would like to see that other groups are buying into this. Overall a good idea.
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Old 05-17-2017, 12:08 AM
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I think it's a great thing too. Lots more instructor craft for me to learn.
Mildly put out that there's a cost, but I understand why.
I take my instructing seriously and for years have been concerned about the lack of consistent terminology between instructors.
I hope this will help.
I just invested $300 in a better communicator, what's another $50 (per year) to gain some education?
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Old 05-17-2017, 10:00 AM
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If this were anyone other than Ross, I'd say "meh". Ross, if he's involved, really does raise my expectations.

Did I see that there was a fundraiser scheduled for them at Simeone, or am I confusing their group with another?
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Old 05-17-2017, 11:36 AM
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http://www.motorsport-safety.org/initiatives/certified

The structure of their six levels doesn't look right to me. Based on experience instructing with many organizations, I would do something like this:

1. Instructor - qualified for on-track instruction

2. Senior Instructor - qualified for checkouts, coaching intermediate+ drivers, classroom, and remote instruction using data and video

3. Mentor Instructor - qualified for training and evaluating instructor candidates and less experienced instructors

4. Chief Instructor - qualified for developing and managing a DE program
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Old 05-17-2017, 12:15 PM
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Overall meh.
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Old 05-17-2017, 12:27 PM
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Is it perfect? No, but it's a start. I don't see how anything bad can come of this. If it works to improve the level of instruction, weed out the bad instructors, and provides a means for increased instructor training, how can anyone not like it?
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Old 05-17-2017, 12:54 PM
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Cautiously think this is a good idea. Depends if it turns into a bloated bureaucracy and an end unto itself - as I've seen happen in other sports. There's a world of difference between certification and competency.
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Old 05-17-2017, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Veloce Raptor View Post
Overall meh.
Can you expand your thoughts? Curious to hear why you don't think it is a step in the right direction.
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Old 05-17-2017, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Matt Romanowski View Post
I don't see how anything bad can come of this. If it works to improve the level of instruction, weed out the bad instructors, and provides a means for increased instructor training, how can anyone not like it?
How's this for "bad": Organization gets entrenched with license revenue stream and gets a "skim" off every instructor participating and yet doesn't deliver on the "if" part of your statement?

The "if it works" part may be very difficult. Look how well the TSA has improved airline security.

I'd have to see/study a lot more detail before rising above meh.

-Mike
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Old 05-17-2017, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by jdistefa View Post
Cautiously think this is a good idea. Depends if it turns into a bloated bureaucracy and an end unto itself - as I've seen happen in other sports. There's a world of difference between certification and competency.
Yep.

I would almost rather see them publish formal guidelines and content for instructor training and let the organizations use that material in their ITS programs. Sort of a published best practices.

At least around me, this sport is populated by pretty sane people - especially those that want to instruct and appear to have the chops to do so. Good information is likely enough to improve things a lot without having to rely on a bureaucracy.

Plus we all know how good the DMV is at certifying drivers on public roads .

-Mike
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Old 05-17-2017, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Matt Romanowski View Post
Is it perfect? No, but it's a start. I don't see how anything bad can come of this. If it works to improve the level of instruction, weed out the bad instructors, and provides a means for increased instructor training, how can anyone not like it?
There are definitely some weak DE programs and bad instructors out there who need to be weeded out. We need consistent minimum standards for someone to be called an instructor, and a certification like this can help with that.

In the same vein, IMO there should also be a program for safety certification of tracks for DE. Many tracks which have pro racing are pretty good, but a lot more tracks have serious deficiencies (Dominion Raceway is case in point), many of which could be rectified at affordable cost if there was sufficient incentive and guidance to do it. Here's an article I've previously cited on this topic:

http://bobstracks.squarespace.com/im...at-tracks.html
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