Water safety

To provide clear procedures that apply to managing water safety, including safety during any water-based activities at FIRST IDEA FAMILY DAY CARE SERVICES, managed family day care residences or venues including excursions.

These guidelines will apply to the Approved provider, nominated supervisor, educational leader, supervisors, educators, staff, students on placement, volunteers, parents/guardian, children and others attending the service.


  • These procedures are to ensure to
  • Provide opportunities for children to explore their natural environment through water play
  • Ensure children are protected from the risks associated with drowning or non-fatal drowning experiences
  • Ensure that the educational program includes water safety and importance of water awareness


  • Increased level of supervision will be arranged for an excursion where there is a water hazard (ref- Supervision of children guidelines)
  • Supervision will be maintained during excursions where there are large bodies of water including swimming pools, rivers, ponds
  • Educators will keep one hand on infants and remain within arm’s reach of older children at all times while in or near paddle, wadding and swimming pools
  • Water hazards in the children’s service, that are not able to be adequately supervised at all times will be isolated from children by a child -resistant barrier or fence


  • Every necessary precaution will be taken to protect children from hot water hazards
  • Hot water taps will be inaccessible to children
  • Hot water pipes, vessels or appliances will be kept out of reach of children at all times or made inaccessible by appropriate barriers
  • Hot drinks and food will be kept out of children’s reach until cool enough to consume
  • Stove guards will be used where required
  • Care will be taken when heating bottles and containers for warming bottles will be inaccessible to children

Educators will ensure

  • Safe drinking water is accessible to children at all times and continually monitor the water to ensure it is stored hygienically and safe for consumption
  • Children’s cups and water bottles are cleaned as and when required on a daily basis
  • Hot drinks should always be consumed at a safe distance from children and from a cup with a secure lid


  • Educators will ensure that children are encouraged to safely explore the properties of water and incorporate the water safety awareness into their educational programme


  • Any movable water containers that allow a child’s face to get into the water (buckets, bowls, laundry buckets) will be stored out of reach of children
  • Water play containers will be emptied after each use and stored in a manner that prevents the collection of water when not in use
  • Mop buckets will be emptied immediately after use
  • Water receptacles will be stored undercover when not in use to prevent unintentional collection of water


  • Risk assessments will determine if ponds and water features will require additional protection such as materials, barriers, fences, gates, walls or doors


  • Constant adult supervision will be maintained where swimming pools, bath tubs and indoor spas are included in the children’s environment. Further procedures are as follows:
  • Swimming pools will be enclosed with a barrier that completely separates the pool/spa from the family day care home/venue and other parts of the outdoor environment that complies with the current Australian standards (AS 196 Set-2007)
  • Spas will be made inaccessible with a locked pool cover or an isolation barrier that conforms to the above standards
  • Isolation barriers of at least 1.2meter height that prevents a child going over,under or around other than under supervision will be in place
  • Fence supports will be regularly checked to ensure they have not been undermined or become loose
  • Gates will be self-closing, self-latching and have a child resistant lock. Regularly checks will be undertaken to ensure the lock mechanism is functioning properly
  • Object or furniture that could help a child climb over the barriers or open a gate, door or window will be removed from the environment
  • A permanent notice within the pool area detailing resuscitation procedures will be displayed
  • The educator will obtain parents/guardians consent and complete a Risk assessment before allowing family day care children to access swimming pools and spas
  • Child – adult ratios will be maintained as follows during experiences involving swimming within the educator’s residence or during an excursion or regular outings
    1. 1 adult for each child under the age of 3 years
    2. 1 adult for every 2 children over the age of 3 years
    3. 1 adult every 5 children or part thereof for school aged children


  • Safety measures for environments that have a bath, basin, tub, washing machine or similar plumbing fixture or appliance are as below
  • Children requiring baths or showers while in attendance at the family day care will be closely supervised
  • Hot water taps that children could potentially reach will be covered with child resistant tap covers or set at the regulation temperature
  • Sink and bath plugs will be stored out of reach of children
  • Pool filters will be inaccessible to children


  • All aspects of the environment will be considered at each stage of an excursion or regular outing or special event to ensure that risks are identified and addressed
  • Risk assessments will be conducted in relation to significant water hazards accessible to children
  • Water hazards and risks associated with water-based activities will be considered in a risk assessment prior to conducting excursions and other offsite events

Educators are responsible FOR:

  • Educating children about water safety
  • Proving current information to families about water safety
  • Ensuring that water safety awareness is part of the educational programme


  • Supervise children in their care, including siblings, while attending or assisting at the service or special events
  • Ensure that doors, gates and barriers, including front door are closed after entry or exist to prevent access to water hazards
  • Assist their children to understand the risks associated with water


Education and Care Services National Law Act 2010

Education and Care Services National Regulations 2011

National Quality Area

National Quality Standard


30, 100-102, 103, 104, 116, 168,



2.3.1, 2.3.2


3.1.1, 3.1.2


  • Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004
  • Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005
  • Children’s Health and Wellbeing Act 2009
  • Health and Safety Act 2004
  • Health Records Act 2001 (Vic)
  • Working with Children Act 2005


  • Administration of First Aid Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Approval, and Reassessment of Approved Family Day Care Venues V3.2016
  • Code of Conduct Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Delivery and Collection of Children Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Emergency and Evacuation Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Excursions Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Incident, Illness, and Trauma Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Monitor, Support and Supervise Educators and Assistants Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Participation of Volunteers and Students Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Provision of Information Training and Assistance Policy and Procedures V3.2016
  • Visitors to Family Day Care Residences Policy and Procedures V3.2016



July 2018


July 2019


Policy created for First Idea Family Day Care Services, inclusive of changes to the National Quality Standards and Education and Care National Regulations

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