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Pointing to a need for increased professionalism and catching its own board of directors by surprise, the Executive Committee of the American Farrier’s Association and a task force it quietly created have proposed standardized education, testing and registration of farriers nationwide.
The AFA’s board of directors scaled back the proposal to include just a review of all North American farrier schools, but left the door open for testing and registration in the future.
The survey, which has not yet been scheduled or even formulated in detail, is expected to look at the training, instructors and facilities of the schools.
As proposed in the full plan, information collected through the school survey could be used to develop a model curriculum, and the schools adopting the curriculum would earn national accreditation. Students from those schools would then have the training to pass a national exam and earn registration as farriers, according to the plan.
If the full plan is eventually implemented — something even its supporters concede is unlikely anytime soon — it would grandfather current farriers, exempting them from the education and testing standards, but all farriers would be required to register with newly established state boards.
The Farrier Education/Registration Task Force originally returned to the Executive Committee with a nine-point plan, which was unveiled during the annual AFA board of directors meeting Feb. 23. In a voice vote by its approximately 50 members, the board approved three of the nine points: