Big Blue Swim School opens in Gilbert to help curb child drownings

Here in the Valley of the Sun, many people have pools to get some relief in the summer, but with that, comes keeping kids safe around pools.

Drowning is the leading cause of death for kids aged 1 to 14, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Working to fight that stat is Austin Smith, who just opened Big Blue Swim School near Baseline and Cooper roads in Gilbert.

The school offers lessons for kids aged three months to 12 years old.

"What’s crazy is, the CDC says formal swim education helps reduce the risk of drowning by up to 88%, so based on that, that’s why we exist. We want to try to make our community as safe as possible," he said.

When learning, comfort and understanding are key.

"We focus on helping the kids be as comfortable and as safe as possible in the water. Our whole program is distance-based. Help parents understand what their kids are capable of and we do that through our facility with professional instructors and mobile technology," Smith said.

One of the parents, Lindsay Stock, says her family is building a pool right now at their home, and she wants to keep her kids safe.

"For the small ones to just be safe around water. Accidents happen. You never know, so we want to keep them as safe as possible," she said.

The curriculum is formulated for children’s specific learning styles. Working to track their progress and report that progress directly to the parents.

The goal is to keep the kids happy while also keeping them safe.