Department of Education Swimming Lessons

Stages and Awards

1.     Pool or calm water

All our programs are based on teaching 16 stages of competence in pool or calm water environments in accordance with:

  • the Department of Education Swimming and Water Safety Continuum (stages 1 to 9)
  • Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) personal survival (stages 10 to 12)
  • Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) rescue awards (stages 13 to 16).

For the Interm Swimming program, Stages 1 to 15 only are offered at pool centres.

2.      Surf centres

The skill progression in surf differs slightly to calm water because of the variable conditions children and instructors encounter in this environment.

At surf centres, stages 1 to 15 are offered.  (Stage 16 (Bronze Medallion) is only offered at calm water/pool centres.)

Higher stages at surf centres include content on advanced surf awareness, similar to surf clubs.

For the Interm Swimming program, Stages 1 to 14 only are offered at surf centres.

For specific information on the higher awards   contact the Swimming and Water Safety team.

Stages and awards

Select the correct stage for your child - Please take care to enrol your child in the appropriate stage.

  • All children will be re–assessed on the first day of class to confirm their placement in the appropriate stage. You must notrely on this re–assessment to grade your children.
  • If your child will be completing Department of Education swimming lessons after the close of VacSwim enrolments, i.e. Interm school swimming or another VacSwim program, it is recommended that you anticipate your child passing and enrol him/her in the next higher stage.
  • Stage 15 classes at surf centres and stage 16 classes (Bronze Medallion) at calm water/pool centres are conducted as double lessons.

The following age restrictions apply

  • only children that have turned 12 years old before the start of the program may enrol in stage 15 at designated surf centres.
  • only children that have turned 13 years old before the start of the program may enrol in stage 16 (Bronze Medallion) at calm water/pool centres.

Stage

Title

Guidelines for students entering the stage

1

Beginner

None required

2

Water/Surf Discovery

Glide forward and glide backward and recover to a stand.

3

Preliminary

Swim 5m freestyle. Glide backward, kick and recover to a stand.

4

Water/Surf Intro Awareness

Swim 10m freestyle, face in water. Swim 5m breaststroke kick.

5

Water/Surf Sense

Swim 15m freestyle, 10m backstroke and 10m survival backstroke.

6

Junior

Swim 25m freestyle plus 15m breaststroke or 15m survival backstroke.

7

Intermediate

Swim 50m freestyle, or freestyle and one other stroke, continuously.

8

Water/Surf Wise

Capacity to swim effectively using a range of strokes over 150m.

9

Senior

Capacity to swim effectively using a range of strokes over 200m.

10

Junior Swim and Survive
Surf stage 10

Effective swimming skills with a sound knowledge and understanding of water safety.

11

Swim and Survive Surf stage 11

Effective swimming skills with a developing knowledge and understanding of personal safety and survival skills.

12

Senior Swim and Survive Surf stage 12

Effective swimming skills including the ability to complete a clothed swim and a sound understanding of personal safety and survival skills.

13

Wade Rescue
Surf stage 13

Sound swimming and personal survival skills, knowledge and understanding.

14

Accompanied Rescue
Surf stage 14

Sound swimming and personal survival skills, and knowledge plus an understanding of non–contact rescues.

15

Bronze Star
Surf stage 15

Sound knowledge and practice of water safety and non–contact rescue skills.
Effective swimming skills in a range of strokes.

16

Bronze Medallion

Capacity to use initiative and conduct a contact rescue.

NB.
The Royal Life Saving Society's Swimming and Life Saving Manual is the preferred text for Stage 16. Although not compulsory the Society strongly suggests that if purchasing a manual, do so before lessons commence. Get your copy from the Society by telephoning 9383 8200 or fax 9383 9922.

The Department of Education is pleased to have Royal Life Saving Society WA as a supporter of our Swimming and Water Safety programs.

Award fees are no longer payable for students completing Stages 13 to 16 in Department Interm and VacSwim programs.  These changes remove barriers to ongoing participation in lifesaving awards, improve the program experience and provide added incentive for children striving to achieve their Bronze Medallion.

Page last updated 24 August 2016