On behalf of our corporate staff and each of our owners across the United States and Canada, we are so excited to welcome swimmers back to the pool as we re-open in select locations. Here, families can find detailed information and answers to frequently asked questions regarding the health and safety measures being implemented to keep our facilities safe and clean.
Brian Garrison, President of British Swim School, addresses the changes we have made to our program and procedures to protect the health and well-being of our staff, students and parents.
The health and well-being of our staff, students and parents remains our number one priority. Our swim school locations are re-opening following the lead of state/provincial and local governments. For the very latest on re-opening dates and policies, please contact your local British Swim School for more details by location and by pool.
The CDC have stated that there is no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread through the water in pools, hot tubs, spas or water play areas. Proper operation and maintenance (including regular disinfection with chlorine and bromine) of these facilities will normally deactivate the virus in the water. Please refer to the CDC’s guidelines for pool facilities, which our team is using to guide our policies and recommendations.
As activities become available and our lives begin to regain some normalcy, learning how to survive a water incident and also experiencing the fun of learning to swim make it one of the most important activities to return to! Survival and swim techniques are pivotal in preventing drowning and near-drowning incidents, with as much as an 88% reduction in drowning for those who have completed formal swim instruction.
We have implemented a number of measures to comply, including but not limited to:
• We are asking that only one parent or guardian accompany a child to their lesson. This includes the pool deck and viewing area.
• Our Deck Ambassadors will monitor and guide traffic flow into and out of the pool deck. We ask that parents and students abide by these new “traffic patterns,” which may have changed since the last time you attended lessons.
• Direct contact will be limited as much as possible throughout our lessons and administrative tasks, including a touch-free check-in process with our Deck Ambassadors.
• Wherever possible, physical distancing guidelines will be indicated on the pool deck and viewing area. This will include spacing out the seating in observation areas.
• Classes taught simultaneously will be spaced apart following these guidelines to maximize physical distance during lessons.
• Class times will be staggered as much as possible to avoid families coming into direct contact with those attending the subsequent lesson.
• The British Swim School App will be utilized wherever possible to indicate when it is time to enter the pool deck and to further communicate updates to our health and safety precautions as they evolve. We ask that students arrive five minutes before their lesson and leave immediately after, to reduce the number of people on deck at all times.
• Our Instructors and team members will not be permitted to work if they are feeling unwell or have any symptoms of illness, or have been in contact with anyone who is unwell or has exhibited COVID-19 symptoms. All employees will be pre-checked before their shifts every day.
• If you or your child have been out of the country, are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, or have come into contact with anyone with a confirmed or suspected case of the virus please notify us before returning to class. We ask that anyone exhibiting any signs of illness stay home until you have fully recovered. In some instances, we may ask you to obtain medical clearance to resume lessons.
• Additional time will be scheduled for cleaning equipment and items on the pool deck before, between and after all lessons. This additional time will allow our instructors to wash their hands between classes as well.
• All pool decks will have access to proper hand washing equipment. Where soap and water are not easily accessible at the pool, sanitation stations with hand sanitizer containing at least 60% isopropyl alcohol will be available. We will encourage all swimmers and their guardians to properly wash/sanitize their hands before and after each lesson.
• Staff members will be using appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) equipment, such as masks or gloves, as recommended/mandated by CDC and state/local guidelines.
• For the health and well-being of our students, parents and instructors alike, we have always maintained a rigorous standard of cleaning in coordination with our pool partners and we will continue to follow the guidelines of the CDC and state/provincial and local authorities when it comes to public health considerations, guidelines and cleaning recommendations.
• We are meeting with each of our pool partners before reopening to confirm that pool chemical levels will be maintained and frequently checked and to confirm additional cleaning measures put into place. Please contact your local British Swim School owner for cleaning measures and safety precautions for your specific pool location.
• Equipment used in our instruction will be limited to only the most necessary teaching aides. Toys will be minimized for the time being and all our equipment will be cleaned rigorously before use in each class and between classes as well.
• We have temporarily removed crayons, toys and any non-essential items from waiting areas and the pool deck and will transition to other celebrations instead of our usual high-fives – just for the time being – to be extra careful!
• The teaching fundamentals at the heart of our aquatics program will not change, so your child will still love being in lessons with us. However, in addition to the safety precautions mentioned above, adjustments to the delivery of our program will be made as necessary and tailored to the situation of each local market.
• Our long-term commitment is to return, when safe to do so, to our traditional swim family interaction and closer contact – key to our gentle, fun and progressive offering.
• We ask that children show up with their swimsuit on, which will limit the amount of time spent at the pool and reduce contact with high touchpoint changing tents and equipment.
• We encourage all students to shower prior to lessons to help us maintain the chemicals used in the pool.
• If you, or anyone you have come into close contact with are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or any flu-like virus, please notify the local team of your absence and do not attend the class.
• In general, if you are sick or exhibiting symptoms of any illness, we ask that you fully recover before returning to lessons.
British Swim School expects all of our team to return where they are able to. However, there may be some instructors that are unable to return. All British Swim School instructors teach to the same high standard using the same method. So, whether you are reunited with a familiar instructor or introduced to a new one, you can be sure that your child will continue to receive the level of attention and swim instruction you are both accustomed to!