Kennel Club issues Code of Best Practice for Breed Appreciation Days

The Kennel Club has issued a Code of Best Practice for the Breed Appreciation Days (BADs) and compiling the multiple choice exams which are to be held by breed clubs under the Judges Competency Framework (JCF), which begins in 2019. The code has been written following extensive feedback received from the breeds involved in the JCF pilot scheme, which have been holding BADs and writing exams over the last few months.

The BADs are an integral part of the JCF and an opportunity for breed clubs to identify those who wish to become future judges of their breed.

The code outlines the aims and objectives of BADs and also provides details of their eligibility criteria, organisation, advertisement and application, pre-seminar learning, the talk on the breed, certificate of attendance, pass certificate, access arrangements, candidate feedback, quality assurance and the complaints procedure.

Breeds may run BADs before the JCF begins in 2019 if they wish, as long as they are held in accordance with the code. The Kennel Club requires that each breed club will run at least one BAD every two years under the JCF. It is acceptable in breeds with multiple clubs for the BAD to be run jointly; however, each breed club involved must be able to demonstrate that they have had input into the day if they are to meet their JCF obligations.

The guidance on drawing up of the multiple choice exam which must be offered to candidates attending BADs, will assist the newly appointed Breed Education Co-ordinators. Under the JCF, a mark of 80 per cent must be achieved in order for someone to be able to judge at JCF Level 2 (equivalent of B list). It is important that breed clubs look closely at any multiple choice exams they are currently using, so that any adjustments can be made in order to come in line with the JCF.

It is important to note that candidates who are not currently CC (JCF Level 4) judges will only be able to sit the JCF multiple choice exam for a breed after they have met the mandatory JCF Level 1 requirements, including having undertaken Kennel Club education and gained stewarding experience. A Kennel Club Academy critique writing course will also be available online shortly and must be undertaken by such candidates.

Where judges have passed hands-on assessments or multiple choice exams previously, these results will be acceptable under the JCF provided the candidate uploads a scan of the certificate onto the Kennel Club Academy when subscribers are prompted by email once the system is ready to receive such evidence later this year.

The JCF will run alongside the current system of judge education and approval for three years, during which time the Kennel Club would encourage breed clubs to identify any candidates who are likely to meet the criteria for the A3 list before the end of 2021. It would be beneficial for such candidates to be offered hands-on assessments in order to be able to progress via the established A2 route before the transition period expires.

Jeff Horswell, JCF working party chairman, said: “The Kennel Club is extremely grateful to those breeds taking part in the JCF pilot scheme who have provided valuable feedback enabling us to finalise the Code of Best Practice for Breed Appreciation days. With the launch of the JCF only a matter of months away, and so many breed clubs expressing an interest to be part of the JCF, it is important that breed clubs are equipped with the tools they will need in order to make this exciting project a reality not just for the current crop of judges but for future generations of judges too.”

Read more about JCF on the Kennel Club website.

The Kennel Club Academy will have a presence at Crufts 2018. Please visit the main Kennel Club stand in hall 3 for information on the JCF as well as newly-added online judge education content such as the Italian Greyhound film and critique writing course. Kennel Club staff will be on hand to answer questions and explain to established and new judges how to start their Kennel Club Academy subscription.