National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP)


NASP® promotes international-style target archery as part of the in-school curriculum, to improve educational performance and participation in the shooting sports among students in grades 4-12.



Educators are looking for ways to improve student motivation, attention, behaviour, attendance, and focus. Teachers strive to achieve state and national educational standards regarding development of micro and macro motor ability and listening and observation skills. They hope to engage each student in the educational process and develop relationships to promote graduation instead of dropout.


Wildlife Conservation agencies are concerned too many young people are forgoing learning outdoor skills that will inspire them to spend more time with wild things in wild places. Natural resource professionals are convinced learning target shooting skills will result in character and self-reliance development that will serve the future of wildlife conservation well.

The National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP®) was developed to serve these specific educational and conservation purposes.


NASP® was co-created by the Kentucky Departments of Fish & Wildlife Resources and Department of Education and Mathews Archery in the late summer and fall of 2001. The program was launched in 21 Kentucky middle schools on March 3, 2002. Originally called the “Kentucky


Archery in the Schools Program”, the effort’s goal was to enrol 120 schools and teach
target archery skills to 24,000 students each year. Kentucky gave itself three years to achieve this goal. Within the program’s first year the 120-school goal was achieved and because of neighbour-state interest, “National” replaced “Kentucky” in the program’s name. NASP® also expanded its participation standards to include students in 4th-12th grade. Shortly afterwards NASP® was granted 501 c (3) non-profit educational foundation status. NASP® is overseen by an all-volunteer board of directors. Every state, province and country enrolled in

NASP® has a “Coordinator” in charge of leading the program in their jurisdiction. For a complete list of participating states, provinces, and countries, their coordinators, and contact information see:





Nearly everyone can enjoy success in archery whether or not they are the tallest, fastest, or strongest person around. The sport or discipline of archery is highly inclusive and is for many enthusiasts, a lifelong activity. Archery is a diverse and super-safe shooting activity with a wide variety of formats and styles. An archer may shoot local, national, and world tournament formats. Many different kinds of bows, arrows, and accessories and countless types of targets placed at various marked or unmarked distances may be encountered. In NASP®-style archery students of all genders, abilities and backgrounds flourish.



80% like NASP

77% new to archery

70% like the teacher better

65% continue shooting

53% like themselves better

37% start an archery club



Students are enthusiastic about learning archery

Student behaviour and attendance is improved on archery days

Students who historically resisted PE class are eager to participate in archery

Students of all genders, sizes, and abilities are enjoying success



There are three legs comprising NASP®’s design:

1. Units of Study were written by Education, Conservation, and Target  archery experts to meet state and national educational standards. This enabled NASP® to speak the language of educators who are intent on teaching core content throughout the school day. These units were designed for inclusion in a school’s Physical Education curriculum but in a few NASP® schools these archery lessons are presented by history, language, art, and even Spanish teacher.


2.Teacher Training was developed so teachers in every participating school could be certified to present NASP® lessons that are safe for students, instructors, bystanders, and the facility. Teachers have a choice of being certified as NASP® Basic Archery Instructors (BAI -- 8 hours) or Basic Archery Instructor Trainers (BAIT--24 hours). To date more than 22,000 people have been certified by NASP®. During the training teachers learn how to set up and operate a safe archery range in their gymnasium. They are taught whistle signals which are used to move students to various taped lines on the range floor or ground to “get bows”, “shoot”, and “go get arrows”. They learn how to determine a student’s “Dominant Eye” and make a “String Bow®” training aid to teach the “Eleven Steps to Archery Success” -- archer form, shot execution, and follow-through. Teachers are provided extensive advice on how to provide positive coaching. Finally, sessions are conducted to explain inspection, maintenance and operation of the bows and arrows.


3.Archery Equipment used in NASP® is highly standardized to be safe, durable, economical, and most importantly, universal fit for almost every student. In NASP® learning the “process” of shooting is stressed far more than arrow scores. The only bow used in NASP® is a “Genesis®” compound which has no let-off and is adjustable from 10-20 pounds in draw weight at any draw length. Only full-length aluminium arrows are used in NASP® to fit every student and to preserve NASP®’s perfect safety record. Sights, release aids, and stabilizers are kept out of NASP® to facilitate equipment sharing among students in archery class. Finally, NASP® students are taught to shoot at an international, 80 centimetre target face. While students start learning at an “always hit” distance of 5-7 yards or meters, competitive distances in NASP® are 10 and

15 meters.




All equipment will be provided by Joussard School.  Parents wishing to purchase equipment





“Our kids are excited and enthusiastic. . . they are learning a life-long skill, they are being taught discipline and self-control, and they are having fun.”


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