During the July school holidays, three Sports Committee members attended a 5 day course run by Drowning prevention Auckland, to become fully qualified pool lifeguards.
The students that were identified for the Pool Lifesaving Programme were selected for longevity and sustainable reasons. Two are Year 12 students, Matt Darrah and Johnnie Richard Marster and the third being our tireless Sport Captain, Laura Robertson and for who it is a pleasure to be able to reward her in some small way. All three have expressed their willingness to volunteer their services so we can fully utilise our school pool.
Throughout the week the students completed their theory exercises which included: understanding the roles and responsibilities of pool lifeguards and understanding aquatic supervision techniques. They then participated in the practical side, which demonstrated basic water safety skill for personal survival and for that of others – on dry land, in shallow, deep moving and cold water. Also covered was the ability to recognise people in difficulty in the water and taught aquatic rescue techniques for casualties, in a range of situations.
After the workshop, one of their requirements was to shadow a lifeguard at West Wave Pools for 20 hours. Here students watched and learnt skills such as facility inspections, dealing with hazards and risks in an aquatic facility, pool tests and how to deal with difficult customers. The students found this extremely useful from a hands-on perspective as this aspect of safety was not taught during the week with Drowning Prevention.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Wahine McCarthy (Gateway Co-ordinator) and Mr Gibbons for all their support as we now have THREE students qualified as Pool Lifeguards in addition to them receiving 24 NCEA credits and their First Aid Certificate.