Surface Irrigation System Operator Training School

Online Webinar Sessions:  March 22-25, 2021


Due to COVID-19, the 2021 Surface Irrigation School will be taught as
four, full-day online webinar sessions, including a virtual field day.
Attendance is required for all sessions. 

Please feel free to contact us with questions or concerns.


We continue to work with local and state health officials, as well as NC State and NC A&T State Universities, to monitor the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. Please know that training schedule changes are intended to protect the health and safety of our community while striving to provide the resources and services you need. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and act consistently with local, state and national recommendations.



Kathryn Luxford

Joni Tanner

The purpose of this training school is to teach individuals how to properly operate and manage a surface irrigation system for the disposal or reuse of wastewater. This course is an approved training program of the Water Pollution Control System Operators Certification Commission, and completion is required to take the certification examination. All spray/surface irrigation facilities, which hold a permit from the Division of Water Resources for the surface irrigation or reuse of wastewater, are subject to classification as surface irrigation systems. The permit holders of classified surface irrigation systems are required to designate an Operator in Responsible Charge (ORC) and a Back-Up Operator who hold Surface Irrigation System Operator Certificates.

Registration is open.  Click Here


March 22-25, 2021 Online Webinars
Day 1
  • Characteristics of Wastewater
  • Pretreatment of Waste – Lagoons
  • Pretreatment of Waste – Tanks
  • Pretreatment of Waste – Sand Filters
  • Pretreatment of Waste – Disinfection
  • The Natural Treatment System

Day 2

  • Surface Irrigation Examination
  • Requirements
  • Basic Math for Surface Irrigation
  • Operators
  • Equipment – Pumps and Controls
  • Equipment – Distribution Networks and Devices
  • Irrigation Scheduling and Calibration
  • Practical Math for Surface Irrigation Operators

Day 3

  • Station 1 Pre-application Treatment
  • Station 2 Equipment
  • Station 3 Soil Moisture and Irrigation Scheduling
  • Station 4 Soils and Agronomy
  • Station 5 Site Management and Calibration
  • Station 6 Groundwater Sampling

Day 4

  • O&M, Site Management, and Crop Selection
  • Health and Safety
  • Permit Regulations and Requirements
  • Monitoring & Reporting Requirements, Violations & Penalties
  • Record Keeping Exercise
  • Groundwater Regulations
  • Operator Rules and Requirements

Exam Information

Examinations for certification as a Surface Irrigation System Operator are administered by the staff of the Water Pollution Control System Operators Certification Commission (WPCSOCC) on a quarterly basis at five locations throughout North Carolina. Application for the certification examination is a separate process from registration for the training school and must be made directly to the WPCSOCC. Completion of the training school is a prerequisite for the certification examination. However, there are other eligibility requirements that must be met in order to sit for the examination. The examination application and fee must be submitted directly to the WPCSOCC 30 days prior to the desired examination date.

Application for Examination

For an application to become a certified Surface Irrigation System Operator or for further information concerning the examination, please check the WPCSOCC website, write, or call:


1618 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1618
(919) 707-9089

The tentative first exam dates following the school will be June 10 & 17, 2021. (Application deadline is May 11, 2021.)  Finalized exam dates will be issued to exam applicants at the beginning of the exam month.

Link to the Examination Application

 Registration Information

Register Now



Hardware and Internet Requirements

1. Students must have a valid email address and be able to click an emailed course link to access the sessions each day.

2. Students must have a laptop or tablet with built-in camera and speakers. WPCSOCC requires that we are able to see the faces of all the attendees throughout each session.

3. You are not allowed to turn off your device camera. Students are allowed to step away from the camera briefly for phone calls or other interruptions (similar to stepping out of a traditional classroom as needed). However, we are required to record the minutes you are absent in order to verify 80% attendance at the conclusion of the course.

4. A built-in mic is useful for asking questions, but students may also use the chat feature to ask questions by text.

5. Students will need an internet connection with at least 5Mb upload speed. You can quickly check your internet upload speed from this website: