Described by BCAW Executive Director Yvonne Bennett as “My favorite board meeting of the year as we discuss, plan and approve the budget for 2019!” the BCAW Board of Directors met last week and continued their strategic focus on initiatives to support their 216 member centers.

Programs continuing to receive financial support from the association include online education provided through BPAA’s Bowling University, the Wisconsin Adult Pins Over Average Tournament, their partnership with the Tavern League of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Vintage Alleys Tour.

The BPAA Bowling University online training and education was first rolled out as a benefit of BCAW membership in January 2018.  BCAW has renewed our commitment for 2019!  The $4,000 investment by the association provides the full catalogue of professionally developed and administered courses to all BCAW member centers and all of their staff FREE OF CHARGE.

On demand online classes include Telephone Etiquette, Anti Harassment, Bowling Center Safety, plus other topics designed to help bowling centers of all sizes improve their operations and profitability.  To learn more about the program and to register your center and team members, please contact the BPAA Education Team at Education@bpaa.com or check out their web page.

After four accomplished years under our initial strategic plan adopted in 2014, the organization is looking forward to Strategic Plan 2.0 when we will meet next summer to develop the plan that will have us “Seeing 2020 and Beyond”.  BCAW members are encouraged to participate in the process. Please contact Yvonne at the BCAW office if you are interested in participating in a focus group discussion or perhaps being on the strategic planning work group.

The association tackled the looming SafeSport training deadline for USBC volunteers approved through the Registered Volunteer Program (RVP) as we also utilize the RVP process as a way to protect the youth involved in our High School and Middle School Bowling Programs.  As communicated by the USBC last month, all individuals currently holding a valid RVP badge must complete the USOC’s mandated SafeSport online training by January 1, 2019.  USBC has reported to BCAW that individuals who are in noncompliance will be dropped from the list of approved volunteers after the first of the year.

Because of numerous concerns voiced since the November announcement from USBC, and after several conversations with USBC’s Mike Spridco (Senior Director of Rules & Compliance) the BCAW Board of Directors unanimously approved that “BCAW will continue to utilize the USBC Registered Volunteer Program (RVP) as a way to screen coaches and volunteers working with the HSBC and MSBC programs. While BCAW has communicated its support of the recently mandated SafeSport online training, encouraging all current badge holders to complete the SafeSport training, we will continue to accept unexpired RVP badges whether or not the individual has successfully completed the SafeSport program. Additionally, we will continue to accept school issued IDs in lieu of the USBC RVP credential as has been our past practice with both HSBC and MSBC.”

Many of the volunteers involved in our HSBC & MSBC programs are also volunteers serving on local/state USBC boards as well as working in centers as youth coaches and administrators with USBC certified youth programs.   Bennett estimates that probably 50-75% of those involved in BCAW’s youth programming will be required by other groups to be in compliance this year.  Additionally, as currently valid RVP credentials expire, everyone will be required to successfully pass the SafeSport training before being allowed by USBC to proceed to the RVP approval process.

While BCAW is supportive of the spirit and intent of the USOC & USBC mandate involving SafeSport training, the implementation timeline and lack of an efficient manner to assure compliance of hundreds of local coaches and volunteers in two programs already in full swing, were deciding factors in the board’s decision.  This will create a roughly two year transition to full compliance with the SafeSport requirement.

For more information about the USBC Registered Volunteer Program (RVP) including the SafeSport training, please go to their website.

Please feel free to contact BCAW Executive Director Yvonne Bennett at the BCAW Office if you have questions, comments or concerns about these or any other BCAW matters.  She may be reached by email (yvonne.bennett@bowlwi.com) or telephone (262-783-4292, ext. 101).