The National Referee course, also refereed to as the Water Polo Canada Referee School, is the top level training and professional development program Water Polo Canada offers its officials. People entering this course must have water polo experience as a player, coach, and Provincial Referee, or are maintaining their National Referee certification. Referees are expected to already possess knowledge of the advanced and specific rules of water polo. The National Referee course is designed for athletes in the Training to Compete (male 16-19+/- and female 15-18+/-) and Training to Perform (male 19-25+/- and female 18-23+/-) pathways. The National Referee will be officiating a wide variety of experienced athletes and coaches at the National level.
The National Referee course involves training in the advanced and specific rules of water polo. The National Referee is taught to apply age appropriate FINA rules based on the growth and development principles, and the purpose of competition, of the stage of development of LTAD. The National Referee will be considered “trained” after completion of a training workshop, which involves theory and practical training. Once the referee completes the training workshop, he/she must complete the evaluation process in order to receive the status of “certified”. Evaluation requires the completion of an online exam, 40 hours of refereeing (scrimmages or games), and 6 evaluations. Professional development is encouraged at this level, and referees will be required to maintain their certification every 2 years by remaining active. Referees must attend the Water Polo Canada Referee School at least once every 4 years as professional development.