Professionalising Pool Plant Operative Training

Following the announcement that the STA Level 3 Award in Pool Plant Operations qualification is currently the only qualification to be endorsed and meet CIMSPA’s new pool plant operative professional standard, Sandwell Leisure Trust who have the contract to manage the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022 aquatics facility following the games, have also given the qualification their seal of approval.

Demi Tripicchio from Sandwell Leisure Trust, who followed her love for swimming by starting off working within leisure as a lifeguard, has since progressed to a duty manager role thanks in part to the STA Level 3 Award in Pool Plant Operations.

She said: Through the STA course, not only did I gain the knowledge on how to safely manage all areas of pool plant operations; it also gave me the confidence to progress my career. I would highly recommend this STA course to anyone as it opens up many new opportunities. I feel proud knowing I’m responsible for the public’s health and well-being and running the plant room competently.

Earlier this year, CIMSPA defined a new employer-led professional standard for the role of a pool plant operative in the UK, as part of its primary objective to ‘define and facilitate professional development’—Demi is a great example of how professionalising the role can aid an individual’s development and career progression.

Luke Griffiths MCIMSPA, Qualification Development Manager (Pool Plant) at Safety Training Award (STA’s Awarding Organisation), said he is delighted that the level 3 qualification successfully meets the professional standard set by the industry and is helping professionals like Demi further their career in leisure and understanding of pool plant operations.

On receiving endorsement from CIMSPA, Luke said: As an awarding organisation with a passion for professionalising training in this niche, but important sector of the leisure market, receiving professional endorsement from CIMSPA further highlights the high quality of the qualification, its relevance to a modern leisure industry and most importantly, how it serves to promote safe pool, spa and interactive water feature operations.

Furthermore, by being the only pool plant qualification to currently meet this new employer-led professional standard shows our commitment to providing the highest quality training for pool plant operatives in the UK.

The STA Level 3 Award in Pool Plant Operations qualification , which launched in 2018 following a year’s development and consultation with industry groups, has been produced by STA to ensure it is fit-for-purpose, robust and features a technically advanced syllabus that is relevant to the whole industry and all different pool types—from sports and leisure centres to hotels, spas, and interactive water features.

Luke explains: Today’s commercial swimming pools come in a variety of forms, shapes and sizes, all having a diverse range of uses and users. We therefore wanted the qualification’s syllabus to reflect this, and by working with and listening to STA tutors, pool operators, health professionals, regulators and professional groups involved in the health and safety management of swimming pools, we have created all-encompassing content and learning outcomes.

This commitment and our investment in developing the qualification in consultation with the industry over the last couple of years has served to pave the way for us to meet the new CIMSPA professional standard.

Further testament to this is Sandwell, which is a great example of showing the qualifications suitability for leisure staff—not only in terms of them operating a new £60m state-of-the-art aquatics centre that will host the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games swimming and diving events, but also as a leisure facility that local people can benefit from and enjoy following the games. Who knows, it might even provide a platform for young British swimmers of the future to get to a level to compete on the international stage themselves, added Luke.

Pool Plant

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