- Are they Autism Swim Approved?
If you’re not sure, visit Autism Swim’s website.
- What are their child protection policies?
Consider working with children checks, social media, visitors on premises, and drop off/collection protocols (to name a few)
Is the location of the centre conductive to your needs? Is there ample parking for you? When actually inside the centre, consider the change rooms (e.g. change table big enough if needed) and the need for any adaptive aids (hoists etc.)
- The environment.
Are there low stimulation 1:1 times available? Perhaps the centre has sensitive swim hours each week. Is there a quiet space for your child to go to if they are feeling overwhelmed? Can the centre make adaptations (e.g. an alternative to whistles)
How is communication between instructor and parent facilitated? How often are progress reports distributed? Did the instructor talk about goals on your first meeting? Is there a plan to work on behaviour support collaboratively?
If policy allows for it, sit and watch someone’s lesson before signing up. You learn a lot about the instructor, the atmosphere, the other staff, crowding of the pool etc. by watching things in action.
Happy swimming, Autism Swim.