Officials are valued members of the Association. They are volunteers who donate their time, knowledge and expertise to assist in the development of our athletes. In figure skating there are many different categories of officials – evaluators, technical controllers, technical specialists, judges, referees, and data specialist each with a specific job to do.
Skate Canada officials must be at least 16 years old, meet certain criteria and complete certain task and activities to become qualified. Activities include:
– Clinics and seminars,
– Skill Tests,
– Trial officiating,
– and actual officiating
The training Skate Canada provides to its officials is held in high regard around the world. Officials are required to attend clinics, write examinations and complete practical assignments. As their knowledge and experience increases, officials qualify to officiate higher levels of competition.
Evaluators assess skaters at test days arranged periodically by Skate Canada member clubs, so that their skaters can be assessed and move on to the next level or test. Evaluators are responsible for assessing the following tests:
– Preliminary to Gold Freeskate Tests
– Preliminary to Gold Dance Tests
– Skating Skills Preliminary to Gold
– Dance Variation/Bronze Rhythm/Silver and Gold Interpretive Dance – Tests
– Diamond Dance Tests
– Bronze to Gold Artistic Tests
At a test session, the evaluator coordinates and evaluates the tests to which they have been assigned. During the tests, the evaluator acts as the assessor and referee controlling the on-ice activities. Candidates training to become and evaluator will be taught how to manage test days where the importance of making decisions in the best interests of the skater is emphasized.
Technical specialists are former athletes, coaches, Skate Canada judges or referees recruited for the correct identification of elements and levels of difficulty of these elements when attempted by skaters and teams in competition.
Judges officiate at all levels of competitions, and are responsible for assessing the quality with which a skater performs in competition and also assess competitive tests.
Referees oversee the ice conditions, ensures that all rules applicable to a test or competition are followed and acts as chairman of the judges’ panel and arbiter in policy or procedure disputes. At smaller events, the referee will typically act as both referee and one of the judges.
The Referee is also responsible for writing reports on the judges assessing their performance at a specific event. The reports are reviewed as part of the process of officials promotions.
The Referee also conducts review meetings with the judges at the conclusion of a Challenge or Canadian Championship.
Data specialists are the individuals responsible for calculating the marks awarded by the judges and tabulating the final result. If open marking is used at an event the data specialists are normally found at ice level. At other events, they will be in the result calculation centre. Generally, each event will have a chief data specialist who ensures all accounting rules are followed when determining the result of an event. They work with the technical representative or referee and technical controller to post results, attend draws and to answer questions regarding results calculation.