In 2017 Water Safety New Zealand reported 92 preventable drownings has occurred, of which the highest percentage of fatalities was amongst the 15–24 years of age group. To prevent drownings, swimming is an essential water skill for life, requiring many hours of learning and practice in the water.
It was identified that access to swimming instruction was not uniform across Auckland South. Since the transfer of operational budgets directly to school boards and the introduction of stricter requirements for school pool testing and operations, many schools have exited from their own pools and swimming programmes. There has not been a school built with a pool since 1976.