Tango Teachers are a strange lot. One thing they all have in common is a lack of certification, wait a minute …. They don’t need any certification. Lets see I’ve had six group classes with a local teacher I feel like I dance pretty good I think I’ll have some business cards printed up with a slick picture of me in tango attire and start teaching. I’ve witnessed this time and again and it really ticks me off and it’s not only the beginners who profess to be teachers but it’s also those who claim to be experienced who have traveled to or originated from BsAs and studied under many of the great dancers. I’ve traveled to BsAs many times and studied with the great Roberto Herrera. Now that would look good on my resume but the truth is I had one group lesson with Roberto in 2002. Am I qualified to teach…No What I do when choosing a teacher is watch them dance and decide for myself if I feel they are good dancers and more important are they dancing a style I like. A good example for me would be Facundo Posadas I love how he dances and wanted to learn all I could about his style. I know what you’re thinking…just because someone dances well doesn’t mean they can teach well. You’re absolutely right. I’ve had classes (class) with great dancers who were not good instructors. It’s your job to determine if that teacher is the one for you. You being a pretty experienced dancer can make that informed decision but what about that poor beginner who doesn’t know the difference between good and bad tango? This is a problem all over the world and it’s not going to go away. So what can we as a tango community do? Make a black list and pass it out at milongas warning people about certain teachers we don’t like? I don’t think so. Post their names and locations on tango forums? Not a good idea. Hire a guy named Big Tony to break their legs? That one could work…..Probably not Okay so what’s the solution? I don’t know if there is a solution. I do know that it produces bad dancers that disrupt the floor for the rest of us. I just had an idea…. Getting into a milonga could require taking a test like the SATs for getting into college. Score too low go back and learn more floor craft or how to lead ochos or whatever. We can even ban those that dance Nuevo…now that really would be a good thing. Oh well just wishful thinking. It’s always going to be the way it is. Do you think back in 1885 in San Telmo BsAs at the regular Saturday night Milonga they would sit around the dance floor drinking Mate and bitching about the new guy doing the high boleos and not respecting the line of dance….NO, someone would whip out a knife and cut him…ahhh the good old days.