THE KENNEL Club has launched its ‘Academy’, an online learning resource for breeders, judges and the instructors described as ’the single most useful resource available to breeders’.
Led by the KC’s Training Board, it has been designed to educate and support those involved in the world of dogs, and promises ‘ consistent and high quality standards of education and training in every activity.
A range of learning resources, films and assessments are available sharing insight and guidance from professionals and experts in their fields.
The Academy is being showcased to the public on the CC’s stand throughout Crufts.
"Everyone interested in expanding their knowledge will be able to learn at their own pace, as all the Academy resources are available 24/7 and can be accessed as many times as the user wishes,” a KC spokesman said. "The information provided in the ‘ judges education' area aims to encourage aspiring and established judges to attend seminars and assessments delivered by KC Accredited Trainers.
"These seminars explain the importance of the role of the dog show judge and provide information on KC regulations and judging procedures, making it easier for new and current judges to keep up to date.”
The breed-specific films featured are designed as a learning resource for judges and others who have an interest in the featured breeds.
"The Training Board is keen to develop this area into an online library of films with multiple films for a breed,” the spokesman said. "Breed clubs are therefore invited to give serious consideration to developing their own breed-specific film.
“The Educational Trust has agreed to contribute funds to help clubs and councils which want to take this proactive approach to their judge’s education; the Training Board’s view is that the more information available about a particular breed, the better to provide a rounded education for a breed."
Breeders will also benefit from the Academy, the KC promises, as it features a variety of films aimed at those considering breeding from their dog, including all the knowledge needed to support their dog’s health and welfare.
Chairman of the KC's Dog Health Group, Nick Blayney, said: “The Academy is the single most useful resource available to breeders, new and old, to enable them to understand how to breed healthy dogs. It’s a great achievement and one that I am proud to have been involved with. I hope that anybody interested in dog breeding, whether as breeders or as potential owners or those who just wants to understand the principles, will turn to the it
“Experienced and long-standing breeders now have the opportunity to update their knowledge of the rapidly-developing science of breeding. The KC has developed an impressive reference centre which puts it at the forefront on matters of breeding, and the Academy is the public face.”
All the presentations and films have been developed by experts in their fields and offer an insight into their knowledge and experience; KC Accredited Instructors (KCAI) scheme members will benefit from a new online assessment process.
"This resource aims to help KCAI members work towards their accreditation in a more structured and convenient way,” said Training Board chairman Gerald King. "It provides a flexible and simple way to demonstrate knowledge prior to their practical assessment. This new process also reduces the need for much of the paper-based accreditation application.
"This is an exciting development which will be a valuable learning platform. It will work in conjunction with the current seminars, providing pre-course learning for people interested in judging, breeding and the KCAI scheme. We want to thank everyone involved from our experts and board members who have been invaluable to this process.”
Users of the Academy will be able to see their own ‘record of learning’, providing a record of assessments and learning resources completed as well as space to host information on seminars attended plus calendars, glossaries of canine terminology and news.
The Training Board is keen to develop additional partners who might want to contribute to the Academy; those interested should contact the Board with their proposals.
The breeder information will be free of charge and the cost for judges' education is £26 a year, with access to all courses. The costs for KCAI scheme members will be £5 per assessment.
Breed clubs and councils are being encouraged to contact the Educational Trust which is offering to part-fund breed-specific films. Email KCET@thekennelclub.org.uk to request an information pack on how to apply and what is involved. Visit http://www.kcacademy.org.uk/