STA Awards


Sarnia Sea Lions can teach all abilities of learners. We can also teach poolside diving, rescue skills, survival skills, competitive starts and turns.

We can teach and assess:

• The STAnleySeries • The OctopusSeries • The Gold FishSeries • The Angel Fish Series • The Shark Series

• TheAdvancedSwimmerSeries • ThePlatinumAward
• The Kingfisher Series
• The Dolphin Series

• The Water Safety Skills Series
• The Competitive Starts and Turns Series • TheAdult Series
• The Distance Series


We are operating the STA incentive based swimming skills scheme – The STA International Learn to Swim Programme (ILSP) have had millions of children worldwide who have learned to swim using this system. Now, as part of our commitment to improving the standards of swimming teaching and water safety in Guernsey, Sarnia Sea Lions are developing their swimming plans (Sarnia Sea Lions Learning Plans “SSLLP”) to include this comprehensive approach to teaching swimming.  The SSLP is a continuing evolving plan and based on intensive research by various organisations such as the STA and ASA as well as personal experiences of the teachers employed.

We hope you appreciate what we are trying to do!

The International Learn to Swim Progamme (ILSP) is an exciting, motivational, interlinking and progressive Awards Programme that engages children at every stage of their development.

All levels have clearly defined standards, teaching objectives and learning outcomes, and all levels incentivise and reward with colourful badges and certificates.

There are three entry points into the programme:

  1. STARFISH – For parents and their babies and very young children
  2. STAnley First Steps – A comprehensive swimming and water safety programme for young children
  3. Octopus – An alternative entry point for school aged learners


The STARFISH Awards are suitable for introducing babies from 0-2 years to swimming. This offers a progressive aquatic awareness programme for parent/carers with their babies and combines fun activities with free play in a safe environment.

STAnley – First Steps Series

The STAnley First Steps Series is designed to teach young learners to swim. The Series incorporates fun activities, skill development and water safety awareness in a structured progressive programme.

Octopus Series

Designed for school aged learners. This enables a route into ‘learn to swim’ for older learners building and developing their confidence, knowledge and skills. On completion of the Octopus series learners progress through to the Goldfish Series, Angelfish Series and Shark Series.

Goldfish Series

The next level for learners who have successfully progressed through the STAnley First Steps Series or Octopus Series.

Angelfish Series

The next level for pupils who have successfully completed the Goldfish Series Level 2.

Shark Series

The next level for pupils who have successfully completed the Angelfish Series Level 3.

Advanced Swimmer Series

The Advanced Swimmer Series consisting of three levels, Bronze, Silver and Gold; each award has a badge and certificate. This series develops swimming technique, speed, stamina and water polo or synchronised swimming skills.

Platinum Award

The Platinum Award is the pinnacle of the ILSP scheme combining survival and rescue skills with advanced swimming skills and the option of either water polo or synchronised swimming.

Incentive Awards

STA has a range of Incentive Awards for use within, or outside, of the ILSP including:

  • ‘I Can Swim’ Badge

This can be used as an incentive for a pupil who can swim but perhaps cannot complete an award or cannot swim sufficient distance to achieve a Distance Award.

  • Good Stroke Badges

Badges available include ‘Good Front Crawl’, ‘Good Back Crawl’, ‘Good Breast Stroke’, ‘Good Butterfly’.

Distance Series

The Distance Series comprises a range of awards that reward distance and stamina over distances from 5 metres to 5,000 metres and can be used as additional incentives throughout the ILSP.

Kingfisher Series

The Kingfisher Series of 3 awards develops diving skills. It can be used to complement pupil’s development whilst they are working towards Goldfish, Angelfish and Shark awards.

Beaver Series

The Beaver Series of 5 awards develops watermanship skills and leads into water polo and synchronised swimming activities.

Seal Series

The Seal Series comprises 4 awards covering personal survival skills. It is recommended that this series is only undertaken by pupils who have completed the Shark Series Level 4

School Swimming Awards(& National Curriculum (NC) outcomes)

  • School Award 1  (Octopus 1)
  • School Award 2 (Octopus2)
  • School Award 3 (Octopus 3)
  • School Award 4 (Goldfish 1) NC outcomes LO1, LO2 and LO3
  • School Award 5 (Goldfish 2/3) NC outcomes LO1, LO2, LO3, LO6, LO7 and LO8
  • School Award 6 (Angelfish) NC outcomes LO1, LO2, LO3, LO5 and LO6
  • School Award 7 (Shark) NC outcomes LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO6 andLO7
  • School Award 8 (equiv. Shark)



All children will be assessed for swimming awards during lessons on an on-going basis with occasional official ‘badge’ assessments during lessons at ad hoc times.

A list of all our swimmers will be on our notice board at Forest School.  This will inform you of what awards have been achieved by your children.

So you can arrange for your child to have their STA badge(s) & certificate(s) please complete your details on a Badge Form and together with the correct amount of badge money, place in an envelope and ask your child to hand to the teacher prior to their swimming lesson, at least a week before the end of term.  These will then be presented at the end of term presentations on poolside.

Saturday swimmers’ can purchase their certificates and badges direct from us after swimming lessons on Saturday (at the end of each term).  If away then we ask you to complete the procedure noted above.

There is no obligation to buy the awards, as we produce our very own Sarnia Sea Lions certificates which all children will receive.