As a National Association, are we responsible for appointing the tutor(s) for our National Level Officiating School and paying their fees and expenses?
Yes. When returning the National Level School application form, you should indicate on the form who the proposed tutor is going to be.
If you are struggling to find a tutor due to lack of availability, please contact ITF Officiating who may be able to put you in contact with an ITF representative who might be in a position to help.
However, we cannot guarantee how successful this will be and it might be necessary for you to alter the dates and/or venue of your School in order to find a qualified tutor.
Before I go to Level 2 School, must I first attend a Level 1 School and get my Green Badge?
No. Level 1 Schools are primarily run in Spanish and French speaking regions and those who qualify as Green Badge Officials are not required to do as much work at Professional Tennis events to maintain their qualification as those who pass a Level 2 School and become White Badge Officials. To become a White Badge Official you must have a good level of English. If you can pass an exam in English then you can apply straight to a Level 2 School.
This certification is also therefore ideal for those officials who have attended a Level 2 School but are not able to or inclined to work as many Professional level tournaments as other White Badge Officials. Instead of losing their ITF qualification, they can simply reduce it to a Green Badge and continue to work as certified officials at non-professional events such as ITF Junior, ITF Senior and ITF Wheelchair events.
I am a local tennis official who has passed a National Level School and wish to attend an ITF School. How do I apply and how can I improve my chances of being selected?
ITF Level 1 and 2 Officiating Schools provide the opportunity to obtain an ITF Certification.
These Schools are held all over the world relatively frequently and are taught by members of the ITF Team of International Officials.
In order to apply, it is very important that you keep in regular contact with your National Association, as the application forms are sent to them, rather than to individual officials.
Your application form must also be endorsed by your National Association in order to be accepted by ITF Officiating.
In order to be selected to attend an ITF Level 2 School, it is essential that you are actively officiating to a high standard and if you are applying as a Chair Umpire, ideally you should have lots of experience in Professional Tennis.
Selections are predominantly based upon work rate and input from other sources, such as National Associations.
Time is necessary in tennis officiating and experience is crucial for progressing between the different levels. It takes time and hundreds of matches to become a top official.
Is there any age limit for being accepted to an ITF School?
How do you decide where to hold Schools?
Level 3 Schools are held in venues that have major airports and most central for students to travel to. We also consider the schedules and availability of the teachers, when planning Level 3 Schools.
Level 2 Schools should be linked to an ITF Men's Circuit event. We try to hold at least one School in each continent each year, when there is a demand for it.
Level 1 and 2 Schools are much more difficult to schedule, because often Men's Circuit events are not on the calendar until a few months before the event.
What are the charges for ITF Schools?
For Level 1 and 2 Schools, there is a £100 (GBP Sterling) Attendance Fee. All students are required to pay the fee regardless of their final result. This will be payable in advance on notification of their acceptance at the school by credit card (where possible).
For Level 3 Schools there is a Selection Fee of USD 250 for all Officials chosen to attend. We send the invoice for this amount to each National Association for payment.
LEVEL 3 SCHOOLS
How often are Level 3 Schools held?
We normally run one or two Level 3 Schools a year in two different continents.
Who teaches Level 3 Schools?
Since the beginning of the Joint Certification Programme, Level 3 Schools have been taught by representatives of the ITF, ATP and WTA.
I would like to apply for a Level 3 School as a Referee and Chief Umpire. Is this possible?
You can apply for both roles, but you can only be selected for one. This is because the Referee and Chief modules are held on the same day, but in different rooms!
However, officials can be selected for a Level 3 School for Chair & Referee, or Chair & Chief, but not Referee & Chief.
If you are selected for one of the roles, you can apply to another Level 3 School to get the other badge you are looking for.
How are the selections for Level 3 Schools made?
A lot of time is spent to analyse the record of officials that apply for Level 3 Schools.
We look at the work record of that official over the previous 3 years, as well as their evaluations.
We send the list of applicants to all the ITF, ATP and WTA professional officials for their comments and feedback.
We also take into consideration any comments from National and Regional Associations.
All of this information is put together and a selection is made.
It is not an easy task and we realise some officials are disappointed when they are not chosen. Our best advice to those officials is to try and work hard to have a better chance when the next School is held.
How do you decide who passes, and fails, Level 3 Schools?
Level 3 Schools are much more demanding than the Level 1 and 2 Schools.
The focus at Level 3 is on advanced officiating and we expect the students to know the rules, code and procedures before they arrive.
The testing starts on the first morning of the School and there are tests throughout the School.
Points are awarded for a pre-school test, classroom contribution, on the spot questions (that we call Pop Quizzes!), overnight assignments, a final written exam (multiple choice and written answers) and an oral exam.
The pass mark is 85%. There are no gifts! We also do not use any quota system (i.e. we do not lower the pass mark because we hold the School in a certain region, or to pass an official from a certain country).
Every new Bronze Chair, Silver Referee or Silver Chief Umpire has really earned their badge!
If you should fail one of our schools, it is not the end because it may be possible to return again, though perhaps after a suitable time.