St Francis CofE Primary School


Swimming at St Francis

Swimming is taught as part of the National Curriculum in Years 3 & 4. The objective is to ensure that each child can achieve 25m of independent swimming and to be aware of certain life saving skills.

Each year group will be given 10 weeks of swimming instruction in each year to enable them to become confident and more proficient swimmers. Currently we undertake this on a Friday afternoon at Cricklade leisure centre.

Year 4 begin swimming between September to December, while Year 3 will swim between January to April.

Each child is assessed and then placed into one of three groups and will swim in widths. Those less proficient will be instructed within the shallow end which is 1 metre deep. Each group is lead by a qualified swimming teacher and there are 2 life guards on duty at all times. In addition, there is a member of staff who acts as 'eyes'.

Beginners and those less confident of swimming are taught the fundamentals which include correct entry into water, safe practises within the pool and how to use floatation devices to assist their swimming. As children become more confident, there are taught the basics of front crawl, breast stroke and back stroke. Children may move up into a higher group if their proficiency is satisfactory.

Other self-rescue skills are also taught which may include:

treading water  

floating for sustained periods of time  

HELP/Huddle positions 


how to use buoyancy aids  

swimming in clothes  

changing stroke / resting and swimming



Year 6: 

Towards the end of the academic year, a survey is taken to see which children cannot swim the required 25m. These children will be offered additional swimming instruction if pools are available.


Each year St Francis has entered the Swindon School Swimming competition organised by Fortius.