Safety Program


“To establish specific guidelines that will help promote, encourage and foster better safety and risk management practices as related to circus arts by creating a system that recognizes circus spaces that demonstrate a continued commitment to better safety practices as based on ACE’s guidelines.”

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What is the Safety Program?


The ACE Safety Program is a low cost consultation process with an industry expert to help your program or school be better at managing the inherent risks associated with circus arts.

After your consultation process is complete and you’ve made any necessary adjustments to your practices, your facility, program or teacher training will become recognized by the American Circus Educators Association!

Click here to watch a short introductory video about the Safety Program.

How much does it cost?

The cost of the consultation varies from program to program! Our goal is to make sure that programs of all shapes and sizes can participate though, and so if you receive your quote and it’s too much we’ll work with you to make your consultation happen.

Take this super short intake quiz to receive your cost estimate.

What are the “guidelines”?

The Safety Program Guidelines are a public resource that describe in detail what ACE considers to be best practice for the management of risk in circus arts spaces and programs.

The guidelines are reviewed bi-annually by the whole community at the ACE Educators Conference, and adjusted accordingly by the Safety Consultants Group.

Circus Arts Program Guidelines

Teacher Training Program Guidelines

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Who developed this program?

The program was conceived and developed by a committee consisting of Adam Woolley, Jonathan Deull, Beverly Sobelman and Elsie Smith starting in 2012. Since that time the committee has done the work of reaching out to experts in all relevant fields to receive feedback on the program, as well as researching the field of certification and recognition.  The Teacher Training Program recognition went through a “Beta” phase with volunteer studios in 2013, and with the creation of ACE the program as a whole. While the committee does consist of some recognized experts in relevant fields, we do not claim any special status; this project has been conducted entirely as a volunteer effort by qualified people because we believed that the American circus sector needed a viable third-party safety recognition program.  As the program evolves we are sure some of the guidelines will change with the times, and as more and more studios go through the process we hope the program will become better and stronger.

Who are the consultants?

ACE has created a Safety Consultant group for this purpose; all Safety Consultants apply and are approved by the ACE Safety Committee.  The application process ensures that the Safety Consultants are dedicated to the community, extremely skilled at communication, and understand your programs mission, in addition to being experts in their fields.  Because our industry does not rest on certifications or formal trainings, reputation, community involvement, track record, professional career and  years of experience are some of the factors the committee considers when reviewing a safety consultant’s application.

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