Lack of qualified teachers "creating widespread problems" for pools and swim schools
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Lack of qualified teachers "creating widespread problems" for pools and swim schools

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Difficulties in recruiting trained swimming teachers are creating "widespread problems" for many swim schools and pools across the UK.

According to a survey by the Swimming Teachers’ Association (STA), 68 per cent of swim schools have been impacted by the shortage, limiting their opportunities to offer lessons to children.

STA's 2018 Industry Swimming Teachers Recruitment Survey also found that more than two-thirds of UK swim schools have a waiting list for lesson spaces, while 78 per cent said they could not find appropriately qualified swimming teaching staff to meet this demand.

Nearly three quarters (71 per cent) said difficulty in finding appropriate staff was affecting their business growth plans.

Swim schools operating in the North, South East, East Midlands and Wales were revealed to be the biggest problem areas for recruitment.

This study was designed to understand how widespread of an issue swimming teacher recruitment is in the UK.

It follows a similar study undertaken by STA in 2015. By comparing like-for-like statistics from the two studies, STA hopes to chart whether recruitment has improved over the last three years.

“Recruitment is a widespread problem and causes many operational issues for swim schools," said Dave Candler, STA CEO.

"These range from schools not being able to cope with demand, being forced to cancel swimming lessons and having longer waiting lists, which all impact on their future growth.

"While the research shows some pockets of improvement as compared to the 2015 survey, the issue of recruitment and how it’s impacting on the opportunity for children to learn how to swim remains a major concern.

"Especially when you consider that less and less children are actively participating in primary school swimming programmes as this is pushing even more demand onto swim schools.

“Unfortunately the issue is also being further compounded in the private sector by the fact that many swim schools already find it difficult to cope with the increased demand for lessons because of pool time availability and a limited number of swimming pools.

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Difficulties in recruiting trained swimming teachers are creating "widespread problems" for many swim schools and pools across the UK.
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