The NPTS has been developed by Swim England (formerly the ASA) to provide a template for learn to swim schemes. It has been designed to assist qualified teachers whose own experience and training will enhance the implementation of the plan.The NPTS is a comprehensive, integrated, progressive teaching programme based upon sound technical and educational principles and provides a standard reference for thoseresponsible for planning swimming programmes.

The NPTS aims to:

Set a national standard for performance - local schemes can equate to local standards. The NPTS aims to provide a degree of consistency throughout the country with regard to what we expect swimmers to do and how we expect them to do it.

Challenge lesson providers to structure the progress of swimmers based on achievement and not organisational convenience - progress through some learn to swim schemes is often based upon low interpretation of awards or criteria along with demands to move through the scheme as quickly as possible. Integral to the NPTS is a clear assessment process with progression through the scheme based on the achievement of clearly identified outcomes. Inevitably, therefore, some children will move through the scheme at a faster rate than others.

Develop a wide range of skills - the content of the NPTS prepares swimmers to participate in a variety of different disciplines and in so doing develops a more rounded and more skilful performer. This will increase the range of opportunities open to the swimmer in terms of future development whilst at the same time provides a sound skill basis for those wishing to progress to the competitive aspect of the sport.

Emphasise the importance of initial orientation - time devoted to initial orientation, to generating a feeling of being at ease in the water will enhance the development of more complex skills. Great emphasis is given, therefore, to water confidence activities particularly in the first two levels of the plan.

Develop high reliability through repetition, revision and consolidation - if you take the opportunity to look around a busy swimming pool, particularly if lanes have been allocated to allow for people to swim up and down, you could be excused for thinking that, whilst we may be a nation of swimmers, in reality we are a nation of poor swimmers. Incorrect head positions, poor body alignment, ineffective kicking and pulling and the sight of people fighting against the water are all too common place.The NPTS attempts to address this problem through improvements in the quality of learn to swim provision. Implicit in this is the raising of expectations of teachers, parents and swimmers. The NPTS aims to raise these expectations to a new level; to emphasise quality in stroke execution; to establish a situation whereby all children learn how to dive effectively; to have some awareness of other disciplines in which they might participate and to enhance their understanding of the benefits which swimming can add in terms of a healthy lifestyle.

Identify the correct standards of skill performance - for too long there has been ambiguity in respect of what constitutes the correct standard of performance over a range of aquatic skills. This is particularly the case in terms of the swimming strokes where the standard expected becomes very much that of the individual teacher and will, therefore, inevitably vary from teacher to teacher and from scheme to scheme. The NPTS identifies very clearly the standards expected at different levels of performance and will hopefully develop, over time, greater consistency in the application of standards.

Provide assessment against clearly identified outcomes - assessment is a critical aspect of the NPTS as this forms the basis for progression from one level to another. The outcomes are clearly stated and provide a reference point by which progression can be easily measured.

Provide a direct link to the Swim England (ASA) Awards Scheme - the Swim England (ASA) incentive Awards Scheme provides an excellent means of motivating swimmers of all abilities whilst at the same time provides a simple way of measuring progress. The development of the NPTS has provided the opportunity to produce twelve new awards, the criteria for which match the outcome of the various levels of the Plan. The provision of the awards now becomes a logical consequence of the teaching process.

Information gathered from Swim England Official Website (http://www.britishswimming.org)

Lesson Guidelines

Hygiene
Please ensure your child uses the toilet and showers before entering the pool. Jewellery can cause injury to both your child and others and should not be worn.

Long hair must be tied up at all times and/or placed under a swimmimg cap. A range of swimming caps are available on the Swim School sites for purchase.

Swim Aids
Aqua Star Swimming School provides armbands and floats for all lessons.

Other aids such as goggles and nose clips are available on site for your purchase.

Drop Off and Collection
To help prevent your child from becoming anxious or distressed, would all parents/guardians ensure that children are dropped off for and are collected from their lessons on time. Pupils should be available on the poolside no earlier that FIVE minutes before the start of their lesson

Spectators
Spectators are welcome to view from the relevant areas. Although, NO interruptions should made while the lesson is in progress. Should you wish to speak to the teacher at any time please leave your name and telephone number at reception and the teacher will contact you as all lessons for that day have finished. Please note that where lessons finish at 8:30pm or later, contact will be made the next day after 9am .

Booking Procedure
Children that are to stay in the same class, have the priority booking on the next course and re-enrolment will be on Session 8 of the course. Payment MUST be recieved on or before the next course begins to ensure re-enrolment.

Cancellation Policy
If more than 50% of lessons are missed through illness or injury a Doctors note will be required for a refund to be given.

Health and Medication
Please ensure all health problems such as Asthma and Diabetes are reported to staff at the time of enrolment by completing the medical questionnaire. Any medication required during the lesson should be available at the side of the pool and the teacher be made aware of this.

Swimwear
Please ensure your child is wearing the correct swim wear at all times (ie. swimming costume or trunks). Shorts are not to be worn as these can hinder your child's performance and personal safety in the pool. A range of costumes and trunks are available on the Swim School sites for purchase.