Beach Education


Our Beach & Coastal Fatal Drowning Rates Are Shocking.

During the last 10 years, New Zealand has had a 44% higher beach and coastal drowning rate per capita, compared to Australia! Sadly, over the last 10 years, 38% of beach and coastal drownings occurred at a surf beach in NZ. And last year, only 9% of Kiwis swam further than 50m in the ocean in 2021, while over one quarter have never swum this distance in the ocean. Nearly three in 10 Kiwis cannot swim or float in the ocean for more than a few minutes.

As an island nation with a coastline nearly 15,000 km in length (the ninth longest coastline of any nation in the world), we need to reverse these trends as every drowning has a catastrophic impact on families and communities.

The majority of fatal drownings are preventable. At Surf Life Saving NZ, we believe beach education is a vital preventative measure to reducing the drowning toll.

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“It gets repeated regularly at our school as I see it as a vital part of student learning - one day something they remember from the day may save their own or someone else's life.”

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Our Beach Ed course is designed to provide practical water skills in a real beach setting, to year 0 - 8 students, for groups between 30 and 100. We teach young people how to be beach safe, using materials that align with the principle values and key competencies of The New Zealand Curriculum and Water Skills for Life Competencies.

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Course Overview

Our “Beach Ed” programme includes clubhouse, beach and water activities. Students use critical thinking in order to learn life-saving knowledge; including how to identify and escape from rip currents and how to practice safe, fun ocean activities.

Beach Ed is a full-day interactive course taught at select beaches across the country, delivered in a controlled and safe manner. All of our instructors are fully qualified Surf Lifeguards who have also completed a course on safeguarding children.

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Bookings for Term 4 2024 & Term 1 2025

Cost per student
Northland, Auckland, Waikato/West Coast: $20.00 +GST
All other areas of New Zealand: $17.50 +GST

To Book
Spaces are limited, so to secure your booking, please click the link below. 

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Book now

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“An excellent day!!! The instructors were brilliant and the children loved them!”

Health and Safety

Surf Life Saving New Zealand understands the risks associated with the  coast and is committed to providing the best possible health and safety environment for all its activities, including Beach Ed. Beach Ed operates with comprehensive health and safety practices in place. Up-to-date and relevant risk management procedures ensure a safe physical and emotional environment for all participants. All of our instructors are fully qualified Surf Lifeguards who have also completed a course on safeguarding children.

Risk Analysis Management Systems

We have risk analysis management systems in place for the Beach Ed Programme. These are used to identify, assess and manage risks associated with each of the specific activities. These forms are at the club and completed daily by our head instructor.

Supervision System

This is a system that ensures parent helpers are actively involved in the supervision of students while on Beach Ed. It breaks the students into groups of five which allows a parent helper to keep an eye on a smaller number of kids. The supervision form is attached to your confirmation email.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • What happens if the weather is bad? Beach Ed runs regardless of the weather. We have a wet weather plan and many of the activities can go ahead.
  • What if I need to cancel my Beach Ed booking? If you wish to cancel your booking then you must give at least 3 weeks' notice. If a cancellation is made within three weeks of your proposed booking date you will be invoiced 50% of the total bill. If your booking is cancelled within 48 hours of the booking date you will be invoiced 100% of the total bill.
  • Is Beach Ed safe? Yes! Beach Ed operates with comprehensive health and safety practices in place. Please see the health and safety link.
  • What do we bring to Beach Ed? The beach is an ever changing environment so you will need to pack for all seasons:
    • Towel, togs, wetsuit (if you have one), warm clothes & hat
    • Lunch,drink & sun screen (factor 30+)
  • How many parent helpers do we need? Parents and teachers must participate in both water and beach activities. We require a minimum of one adult for every five students in throughout the day. This is to ensure the safety of the students in all environments and it is essential that parents and teachers bring their togs and be prepared to get wet. View a suggested letter to send home to adults who are volunteering to assist (PDF).
  • What does the programme cost? The price for 2024/2025 is; Northland, Auckland, Waikato/West Coast: $20.00 +GST
    All other areas of New Zealand: $17.50 +GST
  • How do we pay for Beach Ed? We will invoice the school on completion of the programme. Please note, if you turn up with significantly less students than booked we will charge you for the booked number of students. This is in circumstances where we have scheduled extra instructors and must cover this cost. Invoicing in the Auckland Region may vary.
  • Is there a minimum booking number? Yes. In order to cover our costs we need at least 30 students to attend (Auckland may vary). If you book for 30 students and less attend your invoice will be for 30 students.  Contact us if this is an issue, to discuss options.
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