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New! Flipping the classroom for COPE facilitator training

Welcome to an experiment in the National Capital Area Council!

Your council’s COPE committee is flipping the classroom for facilitator training. COPE Level 1 facilitator training was a single, Friday to Sunday training session at Camp Snyder. That model has not worked. You are busy people, and so are we. We need a better model.

We will cover the material for COPE and Climbing Foundations (Level 1 and Level 2), and COPE Level 1 and Level 2 at We will cover the same topics, but not in the same order. It will be tailored to what is relevant to the NCAC.

Beginning Oct 9th, we will have one-hour conference calls twice a week, Tuesday and Thursday, from 8 pm to 9 pm (EDT). All you should need is a phone with a mute button, and a way to review the relevant material. We will have one-day, face-to-face meetings on specific weekends at the Camp Snyder COPE course for students to practice and demonstrate they understand the topics. The schedule for all sessions is on the NCAC website. Click here for the schedule and syllabi.

There are 14 topics for Level 1 facilitator, and 7 for Level 2. Generally, we will cover at least two topics per session. At this time, we are planning to cover all Level 1 material first, then Level 2.
Students seeking Level 2 training must take all Level 1 training and demonstrate they have achieved all learning objectives for Level 1 and for Level 2.
We will contact all enrolled students about changes and dial-in details.

Our goal is for each student to demonstrate they have accomplished all learning objectives to the satisfaction of at least one member of the NCAC COPE committee. The grading is “Pass/Not passed yet”.
For example, not everyone will be physically able to climb (required for high elements). Not everyone will have the maturity to handle emergencies (required for Level 2). But everyone has the ability to learn to help participants have a fun and rewarding experience.

All required materials will be on-line. Students will download and review the material for the session’s topic prior to joining the conference call.
In order to track attendance at the conference calls, we ask students send an email confirming they attended. The purpose of weekend sessions is to give students the opportunity to demonstrate they have achieved the learning objectives. You must attend to get credit. If you wait to the final weekend, the few committee members who can sign off on you might not get to you. Sorry. We will post individual progress on the NCAC website.

We have not found anyone using this type of training model. We need your help. Your experiences and feed-forward will help us improve the training, enhance the learning, and lead to a community of COPE practitioners.

Class size is not limited. Please be willing and able to commit to completing the program. Registration is by sending an email request to Please include your name, phone number (preferably your cell phone), and BSA membership number (if you have one). Due to the late announcement, fees are being waved at this time.

—Tony Waisanen
NCAC Climbing/COPE Program Manager
COPE Committee Chair
202.810.5843 (voice/text)

NCAC COPE Committee
Chairman: Tony Waisanen
COPE directors: Chuck Gandy, Alexander Butterfield
Adjunct directors: Liz Jevitts, Dave Rinonos
Climbing Committee Chairman: James Miller
NCAC advisor: <not identified>