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We are currently accepting applications for this position. To apply, please close this pop-up window and then click on the link for Employment Opportunities. $18.08-$19.18 hourly / $3,134.00-$3,324.00 monthly / $37,606.40-$39,894.40 yearly


Under supervision, supervise, train, schedule and evaluate the staff assigned to a swimming facility; perform lifeguard and related duties; provide swimming instruction; manage the operation of pools or other swimming facilities; and perform other duties as required. 

Distinguishing Characteristics

Head Lifeguard, Head Instructor is distinguished from the lower classification of Lifeguard, Instructor in that the Head Lifeguard, Head Instructor supervises the work of volunteers, Aquatic Aides, Lifeguards and Instructors at swimming facility. 

Typical Tasks

·       Supervise, organize, motivate, assist with hiring, schedule and evaluate the staff;

·       Insure that safety standards, sanitary requirements and regulations are enforced;

·       Prepare and maintain routine reports on staff and operations;

·       Prepare staff schedules;

·       Supervise the care and maintenance of swim lesson and lifesaving equipment;

·       Inventory equipment and supplies;

·       Enforce water safety rules and regulations;

·       Perform rescues;

·       Perform first aid and resuscitation;

·       Act as a liaison between the public, staff, and office personnel;

·       Suggest program improvements;

·       Supervise routine maintenance;

·       Plan and facilitate staff meetings and in-service training;

·       Handle registration and general daily functions of an aquatics facility;

·       Notify supervisors of disturbances, emergencies and staff performance problems;

·       Open and close swimming facilities;

·       Assist in the planning, organization, set up and tear down of accommodations for special events and facility rentals and

·       Assist supervisors as requested. 

Employment Standards


Working knowledge of:

  • Swimming hazards;
  • Lifeguard training techniques;
  • First aid and Cardio-pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR);
  • Techniques and principles of swimming instruction.

Some knowledge of:

  • Supervision and evaluation of staff.
  • Principals of diversity and inclusion.  

Ability to:

  • Remain vigilant and act quickly in making rescues and rendering aid;
  • Perform rescues under difficult conditions;
  • Enforce water safety standards and departmental regulations;
  • Instruct staff in department policies and the enforcement of rules;
  • Supervise staff. Program supervision includes, but is not limited to: Lap Swim, Masters Swim, Water Exercise, Swim Team practices, Recreation Swim, Swim Lessons, Water Polo, Private Parties and special facility events;
  • Provide leadership and motivate staff;
  • Train and evaluate staff;
  • Maintain effective relations with the public and staff;
  • Communicate effectively with public and staff;
  • Independently make decisions;
  • Read, understand and explain County policies and procedures;
  • Maintain records and periodic reports;
  • Perform simple arithmetic calculations to make change;
  • Maintain a clean and safe work area, which may include monitoring pool chlorine levels;
  • Accept constructive criticism and direction from supervisors;
  • Motivate program participants;
  • Effectively deal with stressful and emergency situations;
  • Swim 300 yards continuously per lifeguard training prerequisites;
  • Tread water for two minutes per lifeguard training prerequisites;
  • Administer first aid;
  • Perform tasks requiring physical strength and/or stamina to effectively rescue victims, administer first aid, and CPR;
  • Perform work, which involves frequent lifting, pushing and pulling of heavy objects;
  • Hear and distinguish a variety of sounds in a noisy environment such as participants in need of assistance, whistles, or co-workers requesting assistance in a rescue effort;
  • See program participants in need of assistance from any distances;
  • Speak loudly to warn program participants of impending danger;
  • Successfully complete all training provided by the department.


520 hours of lifeguard experience.

260 hours of swimming instruction experience.

Special Requirements:

Possession of a current American Red Cross Lifeguard Training Certificate and a current CPR Certificate. *

*Acceptable Lifeguard and CPR Certifications include:

American Red Cross Lifeguarding/First Aid/CPR/AED




American Red Cross Lifeguarding/First Aid




The American Red Cross CPR for the Professional Rescuer.




The American Heart Association Basic Life Support (BLS) for the Healthcare provider.




The American Red Cross CPR – AED for Lifeguards

Post employment certifications required within six months of hire:

1. Oxygen Administration Course AND Santa Cruz County Instructor Training Program




    American Red Cross Water Safety Instructor (WSI)




2. Attain one of the following:

·       First Aid for Public Safety Personnel (Title 22)

·       ARC Emergency Responder

·       First Responder


·       Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).

Background Investigation:

Fingerprinting is required for persons 18 and older.

Special Working Conditions:

Exposure to variable temperatures and weather conditions; strong and unpleasant odors and fumes such as chlorine; noise from children; allergens such as poison oak, pollen, and bee stings; pool chemical fluctuations which might cause irritation to eyes and skin; and the possibility of administering first aid which may involve exposure to infections which might cause chronic disease or death.

Other Requirements:

Availability to work days, early mornings, late evenings and weekends; may be required to furnish identification badges, uniforms, and Red Cross training materials.


PREVIOUS CLASS TITLES: Lifeguard Manager, Aquatics Supervisor, Head Lifeguard, Head Instructor

Bargaining Unit: 41

EEOC Job Category: 05

Occupational Grouping: 90

Workers' Comp Code: 1160 

CLASS: GK3; EST: 7/1/1980; REV: 2/23/2021;