Chara’s YPAD Certification

In 2018 Chara Christian Dance Academy elected to participate in the nation’s ONLY dance certification program. YPAD was designed to elevate dance industry standards in both safety and wellness for students. As part of our certification, each full-time Chara staff member and teacher conducts hours of training every 2 years. Teachers receive SAFETY training including CPR, First Aid, and Emergency Preparedness and WELLNESS training covering abuse awareness, injury prevention and response, social media in youth, dance culture, developmentally appropriate artistry, body image, nutrition, disordered eating, bullying, and conflict resolution.

Did You Know?

  • There are no certifications, qualifications, or background checks required of studio owners or instructors similar to what you would find in other children’s facilities and activities.
  • Each YPAD course is taught by industry and medical professionals through YPAD’s Board of Advisors.
  • In our first year, Chara’s staff completed over 150 hours of training to receive our studio certification.

“For myself and my team, excellent dance instruction is our baseline. We believe that it is everything in addition that makes a difference in the lives of our students and their families. We are on a mission to lead the elevation of the dance industry in hopes that others will follow. 

– Shanna Kirkpatrick

YPAD Origin

YPAD was founded in Los Angeles in 2012 by hip hop professional Leslie Scott Zanovitch and her husband Joseph Zanovitch as a response to negative trends toward commodifying and exploiting youth and adults in performing arts. In 2014, industry professional Misty Lown became its visionary sponsor, and her More Than Just Great DancingTM affiliation program became YPAD’s first certified organization. YPAD leadership transitioned to Lown in 2019. The Zanovitches today continue to serve on YPAD’s advisory panel.