BCPA Online Performance Assessments initiative delivers financial support to Highland Games

BCPA is pleased to report that the recently concluded BCPA 2020 Online Performances Assessments initiative has yielded a total surplus of $1,424 CAD that is being divided equally among the 9 BCPA member highland games and in process of electronic funds transfer to each of the games.

  • Victoria Highland Games
  • Bellingham Scottish Gathering
  • ScotFestBC- The British Columbia Highland Games
  • Penticton Scottish Festival
  • Kamloops Highland Games
  • Skagit Valley Highland Games
  • Portland Highland Games
  • Pacific Northwest Highland Games
  • Campbell River Highland Gathering

From the original May 9 announcement, the BCPA 2020 Online Performances Assessment initiative was a partnership with the highland games, to provide players with opportunities to receive performance assessments to continue their musical development during the spring and summer in the time of COVID-19 virus pandemic restrictions.

Many BCPA adjudicators who participated in the initiative declined the nominal honorariums offered, which enabled increased support for the highland games.

Piping and drumming suppliers which have supported the BCPA Annual Gathering contributed piping and drumming items for random draw raffles for each of the three months of the initiative.

Through a separate BCPA Music committee budget for adjudicators professional development, BCPA assigned additional adjudicators for each assessment, so that players would receive 2 to 3 adjudicators assessments for each of their performances. This was the first time that BCPA had provided multiple assessment sheets for every performance by every player in every grade, for increased benefit to the players and to keep the BCPA adjudicators assessment skills active.

The initiative also resulted in a significant and rapid transformation of the BCPA competition management system from a hybrid electronic & paper system to completely online:

  • from the online Wild Apricot player registration system,
  • to players recorded performances uploads to YouTube and performance details entry into SurveyMonkey,
  • to adjudicators reviewing performances via YouTube and entering their assessments of the performances into a Google Sheet,
  • to assessment sheets in PDF format delivered to players using Internet links and subsequently using an automated email delivery system add-in for the BCPA’s GSuite for Nonprofits,
  • to Interac and PayPal for electronic funds transfers.

Several members of the BCPA Board put in many long hours to redevelop this system in order for the Online Performance Assessments to take place. Even from month to month during the assessments period, changes continued to be made in order to reduce the amount of time required after videos submissions close to when adjudicators could begin their assessments, and then from close of assessments to release of the assessment sheets to players. The learning curve was steep and refinements to the system continue.

With this initiative, a foundation has been laid for BCPA and its member highland games to conduct online competitions (as pandemic restrictions continue), with a BCPA adjudicators panel trained and skilled in online assessments, and with a skilled supporting IT team.

In closing, BCPA would like to thank Shaunna Hilder, Alan Bevan, Lynn Bullis, Garth Newlands, Moira Mack, Jessica Reid, and Madison Rattai for their tremendous efforts in the development and implementation of the initiative, the BCPA adjudicators who performed the hundreds of assessments, the piping and drumming suppliers which contributed raffle items, the BCPA member highland games which allowed BCPA to conduct this initiative in support of them, and the players who participated for continuing your musical development during this challenging time.

Rob MacNeil
BC Pipers’ Association