In order to maintain consistency, we require every educator to receive training and certification prior to instructing an NFSP curricula.
There are 4 levels of educator training and certification & 2 ways to get trained in the "Fishing in Schools" program.
NFSP Level 3 Educator: top level educators who are responsible for training Level 2 Teacher Trainers - i.e., "train the trainers" - and, occasionally, Level 1 Teachers
NFSP Level 2 Teacher Trainers: mid-level educators who "train the teachers"
NFSP Level 1 Teachers: those responsible for teaching students in participating schools and intitutions
NFSP Mentors: volunteers who assist the Level 1 Teachers in instruction of their students, both in school and outdoors
2 Types of Training:
Personal Training: Personal Training sessions are conducted by NFSP Level 3 and Level 2 educators. They are held in various locations and are scheduled based upon local area needs. They are held for 1 or 2 days: the 1st day being training for Level 2 Teacher Trainers, and day 2 bringing in Level 1 Teachers and Mentors.
NFSP CAST Online Training:NFSP CAST (Course Applications for Students & Teachers) is an online, self-study training program. Currently it offers certification for the "Cast A Fly, Catch A Student" fly fishing curriculum only. NFSP Level 1, Level 2 and Mentor training is available. The "Cast A Lure, Catch A Student" spincast curriculum online training will be available in the near future. There is also a professional development course, "Learn How To Fly Fish."
NFSP LEVEL 1 teacher
NFSP Level 1 Teachers are the educators "on the ground." Generally they are school teachers who deliver the NFSP curriculum to their elementary, middle and high school students in schools, or institutions implementing "Fishing in Schools."
In the 4-tiered training hierarchy, Level 1 Teachers are the "workhorses" who instruct the NFSP curriculum to their students during the regular school day. They are most often Physical Education teachers employed by a school or institution, but anyone may become an NFSP teacher. Certifications are available for both the "Cast A Fly, Catch A Student" (fly fishing) and "Cast A Lure, Catch A Student" (spincasting) curricula.
Because the curricula meet 4 National Academic Standards, there is ample potential for instruction outside of Health/PE as well. PE is a "natural", however, because it is preferred for the teacher to use a school gymnasium in which to conduct the classes.
At least one teacher from each school must be certified prior to teaching NFSP curricula in a school. Certification may be achieved at a Personal Training conducted by a Level 2 or 3 Instructor or via an NFSP CAST* Online Training Course. Wherever possible, teachers are assisted in their efforts by an NFSP Mentor, who is also certified by undergoing the same training. Mentors most often complement the teachers(s) by helping with the outdoor portions of the program.
NFSP Level 2 Teacher Trainers are the mid-level instructors/educators who "teach the teachers." They also most often teach/certify NFSP Mentors. Level 2 Certifications are available for both the "Cast A Fly, Catch A Student" (fly fishing) and "Cast A Lure, Catch A Student" (spincasting) curricula.
In the 3-tiered training hierarchy, Level 2s are the ones doing the training and certification of educators at Personal Training sessions held from time to time at various locations across the country. These individuals are often PE teachers, ADs, district level curriculum specialists, agency outdoor educators, etc.
To become a Level 2 Teacher Trainer, the individual must attend a 2-day Personal Training conducted by a Level 3 Educator or take an NFSP CAST* Level 2 Online Training Course and pass the certification exam.
Mentors are individuals from outside the school, who have volunteered their time and skills to assist "their" school. They provide guidance, supervisory and instructional support to NFSP Teachers. This mentoring is most often provided in the form of taking the students fishing at a local pond, lake or stream.
Mentors are certified as "NFSP Mentors" by an NFSP Level 2 or 3 Teacher Trainer or Educator at a one-day Personal Training session. Or, at the option of the applicant, the NFSP CAST* Online Training Course is a self-study, distance education course provided anytime on any device. This is the same instruction given to school teachers who become qualified to teach the NFSP curriculum in their school. Quite often, mentors are trained at the same time as the teacher at Personal Training Sessions.
* NFSP CAST: "Course Applications for Students & Teachers