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North Carolina Day Care Center / Child Care Centers – What Standards Apply to Aquatic Activities / Swimming Pools?

By John Jensen, Attorney and David Wolf, Attorney
Published by Child Injury Lawyer Network


Day care centers in North Carolina and other states provide children with a wide variety of recreational, exercise,and sports related activities. Children love to swim and play around water. While the aquatic and swimming activities can be quite fun for children, they can also be very dangerous. Tragically, as a result of improper day care supervision, negligence, or inattention, children suffer serious personal injuries including brain damage and wrongful death from drownings and related incidents.

Aquatic activities include on site and off site activities that take place in, on, or around a body of water including swimming, wading, swimming instruction, visits to water parks, and boating. For every 25 children participating in such activities, North Carolina law requires at least one person who has a current life guard training certificate issued by the Red Cross or other training that is similar or equivalent to the Red Cross. The North Carolina day care center regulations generally discourage aquatic activities for children under the age of 3 unless the activities are necessary to meet a child’s special needs set forth in child’s Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) or Individualized Education Program (IEP).

Children participating in aquatic / swimming activities shall be property supervised at all times. You can read more about Aquatic Activities regulations at the North Carolina Administrative Code Title 10 A – Health and Human Services – Chapter 9 – Day Care Rules.

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