(Primary Aquatics Water Safety)

Aquatics is a component part of the Physical Education Strand of the Primary School Curriculum. Water Safety Ireland has developed a course that incorporates all aspects of the Aquatics Strand – called PAWS (Primary Aquatics Water Safety). With numerous drownings each year, now more than ever shows the importance of water safety being taught in the classroom.

PAWS is a programme specially tailored for and exclusive to primary school pupils without going near the water. In Cork, Teachers have the option to have a volunteer speaker from the Water Safety Ireland Cork committee to give an interactive presentation or teach the programme themselves. The programme then certifies pupils with a nationally recognised awards from our programme – recommended by the Department of Education and Science.

Presentations consist of theory of water safety – safe swimming, safety on the farm, safety on open water etc. Through PAWS pupils not only learn how to swim they also learn to understand and appreciate the water. They also have fun through the water-based games that are involved in the programme.

National PAWS Certificates are issued free of charge from Water Safety Ireland, the statutory voluntary body established to promote water safety in Ireland.


David Fitzpatrick

I coordinate and deliver PAWS school visits, manage and distribute certificates for PAWS and create water safety content for programmes, publications and social media.

If interested in more information regarding the PAWS Programme or having a speaker come to your school or group, contact our Education Officer/ PAWS Coordinator


The new water safety website for primary school teachers, pupils and parents –
Here you will find clear, simple water safety messages presentations with additional material for use in classrooms and free certificates for children. Primarily designed for delivery in primary schools, this resource will help to change the attitudes and behaviours of children playing in, on and near our aquatic environments.