There are only two ‘Government Recognised’ Accreditation programs currently operating in Australia. The National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS) and The National Martial Arts Instructor Accreditation Scheme (NMAS).
Launched in Canada in1974, the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) has been identified as a world leader in coach education. It is currently the largest adult continuing education program in Canada. The NCCP is co administered by the Canadian Sports Authority in partnership with those Sporting Organisations so recognized by the Authority.
In 1979 representatives of the Canadian NCCP attended Australia and provided the Australian Coaching Council Inc. with the information and expertise needed to establish the National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS).
The Canadian NCCP has been similarly introduced in a number of other countries.
The Australian Coaching Council Inc. was an Australian Capital Territory incorporated association and a Registered Training Organisation.
The charter of the Australian Coaching Council was “to develop, implement and co-ordinate coaching policy and coaching development programs on a national basis in co-operation with the National Sporting Organisations (NSO’s).”
The Australian Coaching Council (ACC) in partnership with the various National Sporting Organisations (NSO’s) administered the NCAS until 1991 when the administrative functions of the Australian Coaching Council were incorporated into the Australian Sports Commission’s administrative structure. At the time of this change the ACC had, as at 30 June 1991, accredited 81,076 coaches.
Over the last ten years the administration of the NCAS gradually shifted to the NSO’s.
In September 2017 the ASC announced it was ‘retiring’ from the NCAS. It was further advised that:
“It is the expectation that NSOs will continue to develop and deliver their frameworks and programs as they currently do. The ASC did not accredit coaches, it has always been the role of the NSO. Any coaches and officials accredited by the NSO will remain so.”
Accordingly those NSO’s wishing to continue with NCAS have moved to form a new administrative body to manage the NCAS, this new body will be announced shortly.
In 1991 The Martial Arts Industry Association identified a need for an alternative ‘recognised accreditation’ scheme within the martial arts industry. The increasing requirements by government and private sector interests for accredited instructors meant that only those accredited by the martial arts NSOs could meet these requirements. As ASC recognised NSOs are only those who are sportive there was a need to create an Accreditation program that could cater to martial arts organisations who were not NSOs and who were not sportive.
The NMAS was established after a two year development and compliance process under ISO 17024. ISO standards are recognised by the Federal Government. In 1995 the NMAS was officially commenced. In 1998 it was included in legislation as part of the ‘Weapons Prohibition Act 1998 –NSW’. Since that time it has been recognised by numerous State Government Departments.
The term ‘Government Accreditation’ is a term that has fallen into ‘common usage’. Strictly speaking such a term is not correct, the correct term is ‘Government Recognised Accreditation’. This applies to Accreditation that is recognised by either State or Federal Government via legislation, regulation, policy or authority ‘Government Recognised’ accreditation is accreditation that:
- is enabled by a government department or government recognised standard,
- has been recognised in either a State or Federal government legislation,
- is recognised in either a State or Federal government department policy or regulation.
In the martial arts industry there are currently only two ‘recognised’ forms of accreditation. These are the National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS) and the National Martial Arts Instructor Accreditation Scheme (NMAS).
The NMAS is administered by the Martial Arts Industry Association.
The NCAS has had three administrative structures, these are:
- From 1979 to 1991 administered by the Australian Coaching Council Inc.
- From 1991- 2017 administered by the Australian Sports Commission.
- From 2017 administered by the ‘Australian Government Recognised, via the Australian Sports Commission, National Sporting Organisations (NSOs).
Australian Qualifications Framework?
Qualifications issued under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) and its predecessor administrative organisations eg. the Australian National Training Authority (ANTA) such as ‘Certificate 3 Coaching’, ‘Diploma Sports Coaching’ etc, have been frequently misrepresented as ‘Accreditation’ and in some cases as ‘Government Recognised Accreditation’ – this is not the case. Such claims are ‘false and misleading’. When such false claims were being made by some individuals and organisations Walt Missingham in his capacity as President of the Martial Arts Industry Association sought clarification from the Australia National Training Authority. ANTA responding with the clear statement: “ANTA does not have the authority to accredit instructors”.