KCSARA Academy

The 2016 Spring academy will be held October 8-9 and October 22-23 at Green River Community College, in the Marv Nelson Science Learning Center. The SAR Academy consists of Core Compliant training for Washington State Emergency Workers, as defined and managed by King County Sheriff's Office.

Register Now!

The SAR Academy, hosted by KCSARA and KCSO, is open to all King County SAR Volunteers. If you are not yet a SAR Volunteer, contact one of our eight units, and they will assist you in registering.

Answers to common questions

Q: What's the schedule?
A: The schedule is accessible through the registration link.

Q: What should I bring?
A: In general: Your DEM card / passport, water, snacks, comfortable clothes, lunch, pen and paper to take notes. Some courses have specific requirements. See below for details.

Q: Can I challenge the written exams for the courses? (or, Do I need to sit through every class?)
A: You do not need to sit through each class. With the exception of Helicopter Safety, Crime Scene, and Legal Issues, you can stop by the Test Center at any time to take any written exam. If you pass that exam, you will get credit for the written evaluation portion of the class.

Q: Can I take everything I need to become core compliant at this academy?
A: Not quite. We are not offering a full First Aid or CPR course at the academy, and we are not offering the Search Techniques practical station. With these exceptions, you should be good to go if you come to all four days of the academy.

Q: What?! No first aid?!
A: Yup, no first aid or CPR at the academy. You can take these courses at one of the monthly KCSARA offerings.

Q: Are all the classes at the KCSARA Academy core compliant?
A: Yes

Q: Can I take the written exams online?

A: Yes! Visit http://www.kcsara.org/training/exams.

Q: I have a specific question about which courses I need to take.

A: Please contact your unit's training director.

Q: Further questions?
A: Email your unit's training director or training@kcsara.org.

Performance Evaluations at the Academy

The academy offers performance evaluations for Radio Communications, Rescue Techniques, GPS Operation, Land Navigation, SAR Survival, and Searcher Safety.

Radio Communications (Class + Performance Evaluation)

Sign up for one of the "Radio Communication" classes at the academy. Durning this two-hour session you will be instructed in the use and theory of radios in SAR and will have an opportunity to demonstrate your proficiency with a radio. No required equipment. Pre-signup required.

Rescue Techniques (Class + Performance Evaluation)

Sign up for one of the "Rescue Techniques" classes at the academy. During this four-hour session you will be instructed in the use and theory of litter packaging and handling. You will also have an opportunity to demonstrate your proficiency in these skills. The class is outside, rain or shine. Pre-signup required.

Please bring all of the following equipment with you to the rescue techniques class. It may be handy to have a backpack to store all this stuff in, but is not required.

GPS Operation (Class + Performance Evaluation)

Sign up for one of the "GPS Operation" classes at the academy. During this one-hour session you will be instructed in the use and theory of GPS devices and how they relate to SAR. You will also have an opportunity to demonstrate your proficiency with a GPS device. Parts of the course will be outside, rain or shine. Pre-signup required.

While there is no required equipment for this course besides appropriate outside clothing, if you have a GPS device you are already familiar with then please bring it.

Land Navigation (Class + Performance Evaluation)

Sign up for one of the "Land Navigation" classes at the academy. During this six-hour session you will be instructed in the theory and use of compasses, basic mapping techniques, and other related navigation topics. You will also have an opportunity to demonstrate your proficiency with these skills. Parts of the course will be outside, rain or shine. Pre-signup required.

Please bring all of the following to the Land Navigation course:

SAR Survival (Performance Evaluation)

The SAR Survival course is broken up into two parts. The classroom portion is a four-hour session where you will learn a multitude of skills required to survive various situations encountered in SAR. During this session you will not have the opportunity to demonstrate your performance skills. To complete the core competency performance evaluation at the academy: drop in any time between 1300 and 1630 on Sunday to check off your required items. You will need your 24-hour pack to complete the performance evaluation. No pre-signup required.

Search Techniques (Performance Evaluation)

The Search Techniques course is broken up into two parts. During the classroom session you will not have the opportunity to demonstrate your performance skills. To complete the core competency performance evaluation at the academy: you must attend a performance evaluation session. You will need boots, leather gloves, and eye protection to complete the performance evaluation. No pre-signup required.

Searcher Safety (Performance Evaluation)

The Searcher Safety course is broken up into two parts. The classroom portion is a two-hour session where you will learn a multitude of skills to evaluate the risks involved in SAR scenarios. During the classroom sessions you will not have the opportunity to demonstrate your performance skills. To complete the core competency performance evaluation at the academy: drop in any time between 1300 and 1500 on Sunday to check off your required items. You are expected to have taken the Searcher Safety classroom course or be completely comfortable with the topics addressed in it before attempting to test-out of the performance evaluation. No pre-signup required.

There is no required equipment for this course.

Last updated on October 5, 2016