Lifeguard Certification

American Red Cross Lifeguard Training and Certification


The City of Fernandina Beach typically offers American Red Cross Lifeguarding courses during the early spring of each year, usually during March.  Scheduling is dependent upon weather and may depend on local public school holidays.  Successful completion of this entry-level pool lifeguard training includes Lifeguarding, CPR/AED, First Aid, and Blood Borne Pathogens certifications (beach lifeguarding and beach lifeguard training is administered through the Fernandina Beach Fire Department - email Haynes Cavender, Ocean Rescue Supervisor, for more information:  hcavender@fbfl.org).  Rarely are courses offered after March due to facility scheduling conflicts, as public usage of our pools increases throughout the spring and summer.

Certifications are valid for 2 years from the completion dates of the courses.  These are pre-requisite certifications, required to apply for most pool lifeguarding positions.  Participation and certification in no way imply that you will be hired as a lifeguard, only that you may apply for posted positions.

You may contact the Parks & Recreation Department at 904-310-3350 from October through December to get your name and contact information on a call-back list for upcoming scheduled courses.


Lifeguard Certification Course - general information

Ages 15 and up.

Each student must attend every session of the course.  No make-ups without prior instructor approval.  Due to the intense scheduling of the course, make-up sessions will not be possible, as each session depends on the knowledge and skills learned from the previous session(s).  Certification is contingent upon successful completion of all skills, academic sessions, and written tests.

A course pre-test must be passed in order to attend the educational sessions.  Pre-test skills:
  1. Distance swimming:  Complete 300 yards continuously.
  2. Successfully perform the front crawl and breaststroke (required strokes for the full course). 
  3. Demonstrate breath control and rhythmic breathing.
  4.  Tread water for 2 minutes with no hands.
  5. Travel through the water, surface dive to the bottom with open eyes, retrieve and carry a 10-pound object with both hands, travel on the back to the point of origin, and exit.

Course fee (non-refundable if pre-test is not passed or all educational sessions not completed):  $159 City residents, $199 Non-City
Course fee includes certifications in Lifeguarding, CPR/AED and First Aid, as well as a pocket mask and hip pack.


2021 Lifeguard Certification Course:  March 18th - 21st


Register at the Atlantic Recreation Center.  Download an informational flyer here:  2021 American Red Cross Lifeguard Certification Course

Location of class to be determined.  An email with class details will be sent at registration.

Dates and times for each session:
  • March 18th:  5:00-8:00pm
  • March 19th:  5:00-8:00pm
  • March 20th:  8:00am-5:00pm
  • March 21st:  8:00am-5:00pm
The required pre-test will be performed on the first day of class (March 18th).  To schedule a 30-minute pre-test practice prior to March 18th, contact Kaitlyn Rivera (see below).

For more information, contact Kaitlyn Rivera, Aquatics Manager:  904-310-3362; krivera@fbfl.org