Swim School’s story

HEADSTART SWIM SCHOOL was launched in May 2006, and is run according to the Swimming South Africa (SSA) approved, Learn-to-swim methodology. We believe that adults and children learn better through having fun in a safe, non-threatening environment.

HEADSTART instructors are passionate about teaching people of all ages to swim and we are registered with SSA and attend first aid training annually as well as other relevant SSA and in-house talks and workshops regularly.

Swimming South Africa runs its Learn-to-Swim program for the following reasons:

  • As a Vital Life Skill
  • To reduce drownings
  • To provide a healthy lifestyle
  • For recreational purposes
Register today for your learn to swim classes!

Meet our team

Janice Probyn
Janice ProbynCo-founder, Manager and Instructor

I am a Mother of 2 school-going children, co-founder and manager of Headstart swim school and a swimming instructor.

Janice is a SSA registered LTS instructor, enjoyed competitive swimming throughout her school career and believes that swimming is a life skill which everyone should have the opportunity to learn.

She teaches Bishops pre-prep class swimming and social squad swimming, focussing on Stroke correction and fitness.

Viv Williams
Viv WilliamsCo-founder and Coach

I am a Mother of 2 grown up children, co-founder of Headstart swim school and a coach to swimmers, runners and triathletes.
Viv coaches the Bishops Prep Swimming team and the Rustenburg Girls’ High School swimming team and distance runner squad.
She is Owner of SCR Academy (Swim, Cycle, Run, Triathlon and multi-sport) and a Triathlon coach at My Training Day (MTD) triathlon Academy.

Viv is an Accredited:
International Triathlon Union (ITU) Level 2 Triathlon Coach
International Triathlon Union Coach Facilitator
Triathlon south Africa Level 2 Coach
Athletics South Africa Level 1 Coach

Kelly Engelbrecht
Kelly EngelbrechtInstructor and administrative manager

My name is Kelly Engelbrecht. I have a degree in foundation phase education and have always been passionate about working with Children and teaching learners of all ages. I became qualified as a swimming instructor in 2014 and have been teaching Learn to swim since then. I have also been running the admin management of the swim school since 2016. Swimming is such an important life skill and I am passionate about passing this skill on to others. My time in the classroom has played a big part in my methods of teaching swimming and has also given me insight and experience with children with various barriers to learning and working with many different personality types. I strive to not only teach water safety and stroke technique, but to instil a love for water in all of the pupils I have the privilege of teaching.

Kerry Ellis
Kerry EllisInstructor

My name is Kerry Ellis, I have been teaching swimming since 2005. Whilst at school I attained my colours for swimming and water polo respectively. Afterschool I first studied and worked as a Montessori teaching assistant whilst teaching swimming part time which then progressed to me studying further and becoming a Learn to swim instructor. I truly believe in the therapeutic and healing properties of being in water as well as the absolute essential life skill of learning to swim. I have seen the amazing progression in children, in their physical abilities, muscle tone and development and co-ordination, as well as the emotional joy and sheer excitement in children whilst learning to swim. I’m also a mom to two girls aged 5&8 both of whom have learning barriers and disabilities, which has enabled me to gain valuable experience, patience and a practical understanding in teaching. I am so grateful to have been able to study and gain the most valuable knowledge in swim training though various platforms and individuals over the years, it is a privilege to be able to pass on this amazing skill and knowledge of learning to swim to both children and adults.

Yusra Slamdien
Yusra SlamdienInstructor

I am a mother of 2 high school children and a LTS instructor.
I started teaching swimming in 2008 and qualified as an LTS instructor in 2011.
Yusra started teaching swimming at Headstart in 2011 and also helps out with driving and administration tasks and projects at her daughters’ school.
Yusra says “Children love swimming and playing in the water. It is sad to see how children who cannot
swim often get themselves into trouble while playing in the pool.
I teach swimming with the hope that I can contribute to helping children and parents remain water safe.”

Daniella Teixeira
Daniella TeixeiraInstructor

My name is Daniella Teixeira, I’ve been a swimming instructor since 2015, and loved every minute of it! I am currently studying education at Varsity College. I have a big passion for working with children. Swimming has always been a big part of my life as well as waterpolo. I am very grateful to be able to share the skills I’ve learnt with all my students in order for them to become the best that they can be.

Kirsty Egner
Kirsty EgnerInstructor

My name is Kirsty Egner. In Highschool I was Vice-Swimming Captain and made KZN midlands. Swimming has always been an interest of mine. I have been involved in many different things since finishing school some of which include au pairing and working at school camps giving me a fair amount of experience with children of different ages. In 2018 I did the LTS course and became a qualified swimming instructor and taught in KZN where I taught Lear to swim as well as mini squads. In 2019 I moved to Cape Town and Joined the Headstart team. I am currently studying psychology and plan to specialize in child psychology. I enjoy working with Children and seeing them having fun while learning.

Anita Jonas
Anita JonasAssistant

I am the mother of a toddler and have been working at Headstart since 2013.

Before joining the Headstart team Anita worked as a waitress. She is currently working at Headstart while studying Business Administration at i-College.

Anita and Grace both help to keep our school clean as well as answer the phone and look after and dress the children that they fetch from the Children’s Montessori Workshop for swimming lessons, and are available to assist the instructors and management during the day.

Grace Bebe
Grace BebeAssistant

I am the a mother of 3 children, the youngest is 6 years old. I started working at Headstart in 2018.

Anita and Grace both help to keep our school clean as well as answer the phone and look after and dress the children that they fetch from the Children’s Montessori Workshop for swimming lessons, and are available to assist the instructors and management during the day.

Craig Hendricks
Craig HendricksSwim Instructor (Philippi)
My name is CRAIG HENDRICKS  and I am a father, a learn to swim instructor and a surf lifeguard at Falsebay Lifesaving  Club.
My passion for teaching LTS  came when I was working  for the City of Cape town as a lifeguard  on the beaches and where I witnessed children and adults get into deep trouble in the water.

I was involved in many rescues as well. It is clear that there are too many people of all ages that cannot swim, do not understand the water or how to be safe in and around water.

This is a life skill we all need in order  to enjoy ourselves and to be safe in the water. Teaching the kids in philippi  is a big challenge and a big reward and my goal for them is to be water safe and be able enjoy swimming.


“Lovely friendly teachers. My son is extremely happy and love going for his lessons.”

Amina Wepener

“Lovely teacher, nice professional service and progressive results every week.”

Kim Benjamin

“Friendly staff , kids feel at ease and enjoy each lesson. Very professional.”

Ferial Ismail

Contact us today

Please send us an email with your details and we will be in touch!