Equity & Diversity
A Star Swim School is committed to treating everyone equally regardless of their age, level of ability or disability, gender (including gender reassignment), marital or civil partnership status, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation or any other relevant characteristic.
A Star Swim School will ensure that equality is incorporated in all aspects of its activities and also recognises and adopts the principles of Sport England and the Swim England Equality & Diversity policy. (www.swimming.org/swimengland).
It is the parent or carer’s responsibility to make A Star Swim School aware of any issues that may be a barrier to a child learning to swim. Any swimmers with medical conditions are made known to the instructors at the beginning of each term. The instructors will work together to devise a swimming programme that is achievable and challenging but which also reflects that swimmer’s abilities.
Due to the design of the swimming pools, difficulty of access into the water will limit the lessons available to some physically disabled swimmers. All swimmers’ needs can be discussed on an individual basis and the Swimming School will endeavour to make swimming lessons available to all, providing safety requirements can be met.
Health & Safety
The aim of this policy is to prevent accidents and occupational ill health by eliminating hazards, wherever possible, and by reducing those that remain to the lowest level reasonably practicable. The Health and Safety Policy demonstrates that all members of the Swimming School have a part to play in making our workplace safe and healthy.
A Star Swim School does not own or manage any facilities or premises, but is wholly committed to providing a safe and healthy environment at its sites for the benefit of its self employed staff, customers and contractors by achieving high standards of health & safety in its operations
By working in conjunction with those who hire the facilities to A Star Swim School we will, so far as reasonably practicable:
- Establish, maintain and review health & safety standards through the process of risk assessment.
- Ensure that the premises are without risk to those who use them.
- Provide safe systems of work for all employees
- Make suitable arrangements for welfare facilities in the workplace
A Star Swim School are expected to take responsible care of themselves and to protect themselves from the following risks and hazards when working for the Swimming School .
Possible areas for concern maybe divided into two sections: In the water and on poolside
In the Water:
- Irritant properties of the water and swimming pool atmosphere causing rashes, inhalation injuries, respiratory problems, asthma and eye problems. (European respiratory Journal)
- Damage to the voice
- Infection from contaminated water
- Verruca or other fungal infections
- Physical injuries caused by a child grabbing at clothing or body
- Sunlight and reflection flickering on the water
- Tripping on platform/steps
- Lifting of the platform into and out of the water. Two people should lift them out of the pool.
- Irritant properties of the water and swimming pool atmosphere causing rashes, inhalation injuries, respiratory problems, asthma and eye problems. (European respiratory Journal
- Damage to the voice
- Slipping on tiles and pool surrounds
- Vomit or blood spillages
- Physical or verbal abuse from a customer
- Hazards on poolside (buggies, baby seats, equipment etc) that may cause a slip
- Young children moving around poolside where teacher is walking
- Sunlight and reflection flickering on the water
There is little or no evidence that time spent in the water by those who are pregnant or by those who wish to become pregnant is harmful, but it is suggested that instructors in such a position consult their doctor for advice. Risk assessments are available for individual pools.
Safeguarding & Child Protection
- Swim England Child Safeguarding Policies & Procedures (Wavepower 2016-19)
- NSPCC (Child protection in sport unit)
- HM Government guidance (March 2015)
- Sports Coach UK
A copy of the Swim England’s Wavepower is kept in the office and is available on request. It is also available online:www.swimming.org/asa/clubs-and-members/safeguarding-children.
These safeguarding procedures stem from the following principles:
The child’s welfare is the first consideration. Services should be based on an understanding of children’s needs and views.
All children and adults have the right to stay safe and be protected from abuse.
Swimming and aquatics is and should remain, accessible to all, regardless of age, gender, faith or religion, culture, ethnicity, sexual orientation, background, economic position, disability or level of ability.
All A Star Swimming Instructors adhere to ‘Wavepower’ Child Protection Policy laid down by Swim England. A Star Swim School staff has a duty to act if they suspect a child in their care may be suffering from abuse or if a child makes a disclosure about abuse. In such an event, the member of staff will follow Wavepower Child Protection Policy. The nominated CP Welfare Officer is Rachel Kavanagh.
Any member of Staff who suspects that a child may have been the subject of abuse will inform Rachel Kavanagh immediately. All changes in a child’s behaviour or appearance will be recorded. All suspicions and investigations will be kept confidential.
Records will include the name, age and address of the child, the time and date of the report. Observations must be objective and without interpretation or comment. Whenever possible, the exact words spoken by the child will be recorded. The record must be signed and dated by the member of staff. The owner will approach the parent/guardian or Head Teacher if appropriate. The explanation given will determine whether the matter is referred to the Social Services for further help and advice.
If an allegation is made against a member of A Star Swim School’s staff, they will meet with Rachel Kavanagh and/or their Supervisor as soon as possible. Details of the discussion will be recorded and dated. The Administrator will be informed within one day of the incident. If the allegation is against Rachel Kavanagh, the incident should be reported to the Supervisor. No member of Staff, apart from those appointed, should approach the parents/guardian of a child, Social Services or Head Teacher.
If a report is to be made to the authorities, the child’s parents/guardian will be informed at the same time as the report is made, unless a child makes a direct disclosure that they are being sexually abused. In this case, information would be passed to Social Services or the Police without informing the parents/guardian.
Where abuse at home is suspected A Star Swim School will continue to welcome the child and family while investigations proceed. Confidential records will be shared with the family at the discretion of the Social Services with the proviso that the care and the safety of the child must always be of paramount importance. A Star Swim School will do all in its power to support the child’s family and work with the LA.
A Star Swim School require a responsible parent/Guardian to supervise the child at all times. The changing rooms are supervised by the parents and not the swimming school staff. Siblings are requested to stay with their parents during the lessons. The Swimming School are not responsible for any siblings not swimming.
Parents are expected to collect their children from the poolside after lessons or make arrangements for their child to be collected. Exceptional circumstances should be discussed with Rachel Kavanagh or the Supervisor.
There are never more than 6 children in each class with a teacher on poolside. There is all round vision and even a child leaving the water to use the toilet will be supervised by the parent.
If it was noticed that a child was no longer part of a class the parent and assistant would be consulted as to their whereabouts.
If the child was believed to be missing:
- The pool would be cleared and the water checked.
- The registers would be retaken and the children grouped outside while the manager checked the building.
- The changing rooms/toilets would be checked by the Supervisor or teacher in charge.
- The child’s clothes would be checked by the parent and if still there, the child would be presumed to be still in the pool area. If gone, then the parent’s car and surrounding area would be searched and the hiring school alerted.
- The Supervisor should organise a search using responsible adults to cover all areas. All those searching should report back to the Supervisor at a specific location and time.
- The Supervisor should make a note of events, including a description of the missing child, what they were wearing and where they were last seen for the Police.
- A report should go to the Police no later than 30 minutes after the young person’s disappearance is noted, even if the search is not complete.
During any procedure it is the teacher who is responsible for the children in the water. The teacher takes the register to ensure that all swimmers are accounted for and are out of the building if the situation requires this action.
This policy follows the same procedure as for an emergency evacuation procedure.
Photography & Recording
The taking of photographs or videos are strictly prohibited in line with A Star Swim School’s safeguarding procedures. We will reserve the right to ask for any photos and videos taken to be deleted. Under no circumstances will photography be permitted in the changing facilities or toilet areas of the pools. Increasingly, young people are at risk of images being taken of them and shared, most often by peers. Children should be made aware that it is a criminal offence to take, make, distribute (send), upload and/or possess any indecent image of a child (including those taken/possessed by other under 18 year olds).
The use of mobile phones on the poolside is strictly prohibited. If you need to take or make a phone call please do so off poolside.
If you wish to take a photo of your child, please inform the Supervisor or Rachel Kavanagh, prior to doing so, either by phone, email or in person. In accordance with Swim England guide-lines any images taken by the Swimming School for publicity purposes will be done with the written permission of the parent/guardian.
All staff and parents/guardians should be aware of e-safety with regards to protecting children/young people within A Star Swim School and the use of social networking or other on-line services.
Staff have mobile telephones on poolside for emergency/administration use only.
Children on the poolside should be supervised by their parent/carer. It is the School policy that mobile phones are not used on the poolside and any photography or recording of images is only carried out in accordance with the Swimming School’s Safeguarding policy. Parents of children playing with electronic devices on poolside must make their children aware that any recording or streaming of other people is not allowed.
No one is allowed to use mobile phones or recording equipment in the changing areas. Increasingly, young people are at risk of images being taken of them and shared, most often by peers. Children should be made aware that it is a criminal offence to take, make, distribute (send), upload and/or possess any indecent image of a child (including those taken/possessed by other under 18 year olds).
The Swimming School will operate in line with the Swim England’s code of ethics and within the law regarding how the Swimming School uses information technology. Email addresses and mobile phone numbers of parents/carers are held with the permission of the adult to enable communication between the swim school and parents. Children will not be contacted directly.
Photographs and information appearing on the A Star Swim School’s website, Instagram and Facebook page are used in accordance with the Safeguarding policy. The website and Facebook page are managed by A Star Swim school staff.
All staff should protect their privacy on-line and carefully consider to who they give access to their personal information on-line. There should be a clear differentiation between their personal and professional profiles.
A Star Swim School has a no corporal punishment policy. It is the general policy of the Swimming School to encourage good behaviour by following the rules and code of conduct stated for each pool and to develop each pupil’s understanding of acceptable behaviour and good self-control when working in an environment that could be a potential area of risk.
If a child continues to be constantly disruptive the Supervisor will speak to the parent asking for their support. The Teacher must also inform Rachel Kavanagh who will follow up the matter as soon as possible.
Hygiene for Swimmers
- If possible shower before entering the water
- Use the toilet before entering the water
- Blow nose before entering the water
- ATHLETE’S FOOT – persons with severe athlete’s foot should not be allowed in the swimming pool or surrounding area unless their feet are suitably covered
- VERRUCAE – persons suffering from verrucae must wear a verruca sock
- Anyone suffering from any type of stomach upset (diarrhoea or sickness) should not be allowed in the pool for a minimum of 48 hours after the symptoms have cleared
- Persons with any infected skin lesion should not be allowed in the pool
- Persons with a discharging ear infection should not be allowed in the pool
- A swimming hat should be worn by all swimmers in order to protect the filter system
Hygiene for Spectators
- No shoes on poolside, overshoes may be worn
- No food or drink on poolside, water is permitted.
- No buggies or pushchairs are to be brought on to poolside
- In the event of an emergency the person in charge will blow a single long blast on a whistle
- All swimmers and spectators will immediately stop what they are doing and wait quietly for further instructions
- Should it be necessary to clear the pool, when the instruction is given, all swimmers will move to the sides of the pool, leave the water and stand back from the side. Swimmers will remain standing at all times
- Should it be necessary to evacuate the building no attempt should be made to recover possessions from the changing rooms or anywhere else within the building
- There is a set of procedures for evacuation. In all instances where it is necessary to evacuate the building a member of staff will take charge once the swimmers have left the water
- The pool at the point of access together with safety signage must display a statuary disclaimer
- Lifesaving equipment is provided on the poolside e.g. Reach pole
A Star Swim School seek to provide a safe, secure and positive environment in which children and adults can learn to swim and develop their full potential.
The Swimming School is committed to a value system within which children and adults are entitled to be treated with respect and understanding so that they may participate in any activity without fear. Any behaviour which undermines this is unacceptable.
The Swimming School seeks to ensure that those acting on behalf of the Swimming School actively listen to children and act appropriately on information received in order to ensure that a safe, secure and positive outcome is provided.
All children have a right to feel secure: to be able to trust without fear, and to expect protection from adults in positions of care and responsibility. They also have a right to take part in activities in an environment that does not subject them to cruelty or create unhappiness.
A Star Swim School will promote the positive aspects of sport and never condone the use of inappropriate or abusive language, inappropriate relationships, bullying, harassment, discrimination or physical violence.
The Swimming School will respect the spirit of sport adhering to the rules and laws in and out of the pool, incorporating the concept of friendship and respect for others.
All bullying is unacceptable. All victims of bullying will be treated in a supportive manner. Bullying may be defined as the intentional abuse by power of an individual or group with the intent and motivation to cause distress to another individual or group. It may be physical, sexual, verbal, racial, emotional, psychological, digital (on-line) or based on ‘difference’ in nature. It may occur frequently or infrequently, regularly or irregularly, but it will be taken seriously even if it has only occurred on one occasion. (See Kidscape.org.uk for further information.) Safeguarding children is everyone’s responsibility. (The Children Acts 1989 and 2004/Working Together to Safeguard Children – Department of Education, 2015). This includes everyone who works with children.
A Star Swim School’s policy is in line with the principles of Wavepower, however, staff are advised to read Wavepower for more in-depth legal information.
A Star Swim School complies with the Swim England Code of Ethics and Safeguarding Procedures (Wavepower). All staff must adhere to Wavepower and the following policies: Swim England Anti-doping rules, Equity policy, Laws and regulations, Codes of conduct. Details of all Swim England policies are available on the Swim England website: www.swimming.org/swimengland.
All organisations and individuals have a duty of care to safeguard children when they are participating in their activities. Staff must accept responsibility for their own behaviour and encourage and guide all Swim England members and parents of junior members to accept responsibility for their own behaviour and conduct.
Staff must ensure all concerns of a child safeguarding nature are referred in accordance with the Swimming School’s policy and Wavepower.
Staff must conduct themselves in a manner that takes all reasonable measures to protect their own safety and the safety of others.
No adult will be left alone with individual children. If it is necessary to take a child aside to speak to them it will be done in full view of another member of Staff.
The lay-out of the swimming pools allows for constant supervision of all children. However, should it be deemed necessary to enter the changing rooms with an individual child, that member of Staff should seek support of another member of Staff, or a reliable adult.
Parents should not be in the changing room while children are changing unless their child is of an age where help is required from parents (8 years and below).
Any person visiting the pools who is unknown to the Staff will be asked to identify themselves and which child they are accompanying. If this is not forthcoming or is unsatisfactory, they will then be asked to leave the premises.
No member of the public will be allowed to enter the changing room until all children have finished dressing. Equally, no Swim School members should enter changing rooms where other clubs or schools are using them until told to do so.
Due to the nature of the sport of swimming, staff may be the first to see signs of physical abuse or neglect. They are aware of the importance of listening to, rather than questioning, a child. No child who is freely recalling information or events will be stopped until they finish of their own accord. Staff will avoid asking leading questions or ones which could be construed as putting ideas into the child’s head. Staff will never promise the child confidentiality but explain that it may be in their interest for information to be passed on to an appropriate adult.
A record of subsequent events will be kept, no matter how trivial they may seem at the time. Staff will not promise the child confidentiality in any matter but will explain to the child that it may be in their interest for this information to be passed on to other appropriate contacts.
Members of Staff should not transport children to and from lessons. Parents should stay with their children at the pool but if a child is left at a pool at the end of the session, the Supervisor will stay with the child until they are collected. The Supervisor will have a contact number for the parent. If the parent cannot be contacted and the emergency number has also been checked, the child should be asked if there is another family member who could be contacted. If no-one can be contacted, the local Police should be contacted to enquire about the best course of action.
Providing early help is more effective in promoting the welfare of children than reacting later.
Code of Conduct
We as a Swimming School and individually as Teachers agree: –
- To respect the rights, dignity and worth of every human being. To treat everyone equally and never discriminate on any grounds.
- To adhere to the Swim England Code of Ethics, Rules & Laws, Wavepower, Equality and Diversity policies.
- To provide safe supervision of your child when swimming as far as possible within the limits of our control.
- To take all reasonable steps to establish a safe working environment.
- To ensure that all teaching is appropriate for the age, ability and experience of the individual and that our work and the manner it is done are in keeping with the regular and approved practice of this sport.
- To maintain our teaching and professional development to ensure your child is with safe and experienced teachers, offering the best available knowledge.
- To be concerned primarily with the well-being, health and future of the individual swimmer and only secondarily with the optimisation of their performance.
- To respect the swimmers’ rights, wishes and feelings. To take all reasonable practical steps to protect the children from harm, discrimination or degrading treatment.
- To complete regular safeguarding training in line with Swim England guidance. The child’s welfare is paramount and every child has the right to protection from abuse.
- To encourage and guide swimmers to accept responsibility for their own behaviour and performance.
- To always be publicly open when working with children. We will avoid situations where we as teachers and individual swimmers are completely unobserved.
- That any manual support of the child will be provided openly.
- To encourage an open environment i.e. no secrets.
- To develop an appropriate working relationship with swimmers based on mutual trust and respect.
- To never exert undue influence to obtain personal benefit or reward.
- To ensure any suspicions and allegations of safeguarding issues will be taken seriously, responded to swiftly and appropriately.
- To run classes throughout the term time and to invoice customers before the start of the new term. Should lessons be cancelled for any reason, an alternative date and time will be offered. No refunds will be provided for lessons that are cancelled for reasons outside the control of the Swim School, including severe weather conditions.
Parents & Swimmers
We ask that you as Parents & Swimmers agree with the following: –
- Complete and return the Medical Information form as requested and provide details of any relevant health conditions/concerns. To report any changes in the state of your child’s health to the teacher prior to the lesson.
- Ensure that the Swim School has up to date contact details as required.
- Ensure that your child is prompt for their lessons and is well enough to participate fully in the lesson. Swimmers must be in a clean state before entering the pool.
- Ensure that the swimmers have the appropriate swimwear and swimming hats with them. Hats must be worn at all pools. Jewellery should not be worn in the water. The parent/guardian is responsible for the safe keeping of any valuables.
- Ensure that the Supervisor knows if a child is being collected by someone other than their usual adult. Staff will stay with a child who has not been collected but if they are unable to contact parents, they will following safeguarding guidelines and contact the local police to find the best course of action.
- To obey instructions given by the Teacher(s) and comply with any safety regulations. No running or pushing is allowed.
- To consistently display high standards of behaviour and report poor behaviour by others to an appropriate member of staff.
- To ensure a member of A Star Swim School is present before entering the pool building. Swimmers should not enter the water unless directed to do so by a Teacher. Floats and swimming aids should only be used under the instruction and supervision of the Teacher.
- No running is permitted on the premises. Children not swimming are the responsibility of the parent/guardian and must remain with them at all times. The School and Playgrounds are out of bounds and the parent/guardian will be held responsible for any damage to school property caused by the child in their care.
- At Green Park, shoes should only be worn in the spectators’ area. No shoes are allowed in the changing room or on poolside at any of our venues.
- As space is limited, the changing area should be vacated as quickly as possible and the number of spectators kept to a minimum.
- The use of mobile phones and recording devices are not allowed on poolside or in the changing rooms in accordance with the A Star Swim School
- To behave responsibly as a spectator during lessons and treat other customers and staff with due respect in accordance with the Swim School’s commitment to diversity and equality.
- No food or drink is allowed on the premises, or any potentially dangerous containers such as bottles.
- To support children and encourage them to enjoy their sport and to achieve to the best of their ability.
- To respect the privacy of others, especially in the use of changing facilities. Parents should not be in the changing room while children are changing unless their child is of an age where help is required from parents (8 years and below).
- Customers are requested to leave buggies in a designated area, it would be preferable for them to be left outside weather permitting.
- Ensure children are aware of the code of conduct.
A Star Swim School will review this policy statement at least annually