FAQs about our Academy

Please read through our FAQs, if your question isn’t answered here then feel free to telephone us or fill out a contact formand our admin teamwill help you.

Joining PSA

At what age can my child start swimming with Penguins Academy?
Swimmers can join the parent and child classes from the age of 6 months and from the age of 3 years swimmers can join our beginner groups (Little Blue Penguins). These classes usually have two paid helpers in the water with them and we guarantee at least one.
Can my child join lessons at any point in the block?
Yes. At the time of enrolling you would pay for the number of weeks remaining in the block.The usual length of a block is 13 weeks.
How do I know what level my child will be with Penguins Academy?
The first three levels can generally be assessed over the telephone. However, as our lessons are grouped on technique the swimmer would need to be assessed by us if they are swimming competently.

Progression through the stages

What happens if my child is ready to move up part way through a block?
The teachers will let the office know immediately a child is ready to move up. The office will then telephone the parent/guardian with available options at the new level. If there is not a day that suits with other family commitments, the child can stay at the same level until re-enrolment time when there would potentially be more choice.
My child has been at the same level for a long time. Why is this?
Our swimmers move up a level once particular technique elements are reached. This needs to be consistently and comfortably. Sometimes a child will struggle on a particular aspect, but if they persevere it will come. Usually when this happens, once the skill is mastered they progress quickly. It is helpful if parents can take their children to public sessions to practice the skills that they are learning. However, the team at the office are always happy to receive any particular concerns you may have.
On my child’s report form they had mastered skills, but now they are showing as unmastered. Why is this?
Sometimes a child can master a skill such as breast stroke legs, but a block or two later it is shown as an outstanding skill. This can be for a number of reasons, but often when a child has a growth spurt their co-ordination can be set back which makes skills that they could master, suddenly much more difficult. The office will be happy to answer any specific queries you may have.
How is my childs progression tracked?
Your child is assessed every week and once a skill is mastered consistently it is marked on the register as complete. If your child changes teacher at the same level, the completed targets are transferred over. At the end of a block if your child is not moving up, you will be provided with a report showing the targets completed and those still outstanding.
My child has a cover teacher, will this hinder progression?
We have a scheme of work (which can be seen on this website) which all teachers will implement, including cover teachers. All cover teachers are qualified and are usually our existing teachers or teachers who have left to go to university and are back on holidays covering for us. When targets are completed they are marked on the register in the same way that the usual teacher would do. Therefore, your childs progression is not held back whatsoever.
How does my child get a medal and certificate?
When your child is ready to move to the next level and you speak with the office to enrol you can order a medal and laminated certificate to be presented to your child on poolside by their teacher. The cost of this is 3.50.

Your child's first lessons

What equipment does my child need to swim?
The young children in parent and child need to wear swimming nappies.
We provide all equipment for your children’s lessons, all that’s needed is a costume and goggles (optional). We discourage goggles at the Little Blue (beginner) level but usually for the levels above, the swimmers wear goggles. Children should wear tight-fitting lycra costumes/trunks, bikinis should not be worn by girls and no baggy shorts for boys. A replacement swimming cap can be purchased on the poolside for 1.50
An initial colour coded hat is issued free of charge.

Attendance to Lessons

If I cannot attend a class one week, can I attend another day?
We can permanently switch your child to another class for an admincharge of 5. This charge is waived if switched during re-enrolment time. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer a different class as a short term option.
My child is unable to swim for a number of weeks on medical grounds, can I get a refund?
A child can be removed from the Academy with a 50% refund. However, with a doctor’s note we can issue a full refund.  However, we cannot save a space in their current class for their return.

Enrolment and Re-enrolment

How do I enrol my child into one of your classes?
To enrol your child into one of our Swimming Academy classes please contact our office either via one of our online forms, or through telephoning the officeon 0116 2325821 or 2320999
How do I re-enrol my child?
You will be given a form approximately 3 weeks before the end of the block specifying the procedure to re-enrol your child.
What do I do if I do not want to re-enrol my child for any reason?
Re-enrolment is not automatic and any child will only be re-enroled on your instruction.
Do you offer taster sessions for new swimmers?
Unfortunately we are unable to offer this service, however you are welcome to visit the pool and observe a lesson. Our pool times are at the bottom of the page
Can I enrol and pay on poolside?
All enrolments are processed in the office where you will be required to provide either debit or credit card details.

Lost Property

How do I locate something I have left at the pool?
Lost property is kept by the Grammar School who can be contacted on 0116 259 1900.