Our Staff

The team at Little Fish Swim School are here to help you and your child achieve successful outcomes in and around the water. Our fully qualified and accredited teachers come with many years experience and have a passion for helping each and every child develop confidence and the skills to enjoy the water. 

Hayley Ryan

Manager/Instructor

I am a Qualified Swimming Instructor – teaching swimming and water safety, infant aquatics and access and inclusion. I am also a qualified Austswim assessor and have been teaching in the aquatic industry since 2001. My background is in Early Learning management and have an Advanced Diploma in Early Childhood. I am driven by helping and watching children grow and learn with confidence.

I have worked at Little Fish Swim School since 2008 with the previous owners and took over ownership with my sister Jodie in April 2015.  I grew up around the water, living close to the beach, and was a swimmer myself. I have always had a passion for teaching children to enjoy the water and to learn to be safe and confident swimmers. I truly believe it is one of the most precious gifts you can teach your child.

What I love most about what I do: I thoroughly enjoy watching children of all ages develop confidence and enjoyment in the water. I love seeing the older children develop their strokes but really love seeing parents and babies bond during our infant classes and see young children grow their skills and become confident and safe in the water at such a young age. 

When I’m not in the pool you’ll find me: Enjoying spending time with my two young children, running around after them and doing motherly duties. If I have spare time you will find me somewhere close to the water with a nice coffee or catching up with friends.

My perfect weekend: Definitely an early morning trip to the beach with the kids – exploring the rock pools, collecting shells and of course swimming; followed by fish and chips for lunch before a relaxing arvo at home with a beer or two!

Qualifications:

  • AUSTSWIM Assessor
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Infant and Preschool
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Aquatics Access and Inclusion
  • Advanced Diploma Early Childhood
  • First Aid and CPR
  • Blue Card

Jodie Aczel

Owner/Director

I took over Little Fish Swim School with my sister, Hayley, in April 2015. I love the business and enjoy being able to provide such an important service to local families. I'm passionate about Little Fish and our wonderful team of Instructors.

I'm Bachelor qualified and my background is as a Marketing Manager and Consultant in the tourism industry and small business. I've got 2 children who attend school locally and have lived around the area for most of my life. My main role is to ensure our customers are happy, children are progressing and overall management of the business. I have my AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety so you might see me teaching when we have staff away.

What I love most about what I do: It's wonderful seeing children build a relationship with their teacher, gain confidence in the water, be safe and learn their swimming strokes. I love seeing children start in our baby program and go all the way through to our higher stroke levels. It really is skill that will provide a life-time of enjoyment.

When I’m not in the office you’ll find me: Driving the kids around – isn’t that what mums are for! Seriously though, I do love doing stuff with my children and when I do get a moment to myself I enjoy a bit of shopping, exercising or hanging out with friends. 

My perfect weekend: I love going up the coast and spending the morning at the beach with my family. Followed by a nice lunch out and maybe a glass of wine to top off the afternoon! 

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor of Business
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety
  • CPR and First Aid
  • Blue Card Working with Children QLD

Shinead Hailstone

Swimming Instructor

I have been a Learn to Swim Teacher since 2014 and am also qualified to teach babies and toddlers. I’ve worked at Little Fish Swim School since early 2016 and work mostly with younger age groups but also do stroke development work with older children.

I am passionate about my job and love going to work every day. I am passionate with what I teach each week to ensure the kids in my class are learning and progressing their skills. I am a big believer in Learn to Swim for all ages and abilities.

What I love most about what I do: I love watching the kids grow with confidence and their skills each week as they become great little swimmers.

When I’m not in the pool you’ll find me: Going to the football or watching football, being outdoors 

My perfect weekend: Spending the whole weekend on a cruise – I can only dream! 

Qualifications:

  • Swim Australia - Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety
  • Swim Australia - Teacher of Babies and Toddlers
  • Swim Australia - Teacher of Learners with a Disability
  • CPR
  • Blue Card Working with Children QLD

Lisa Beaven

Swimming Instructor

I’ve had a passion for sports and swimming since I was young and enjoyed being a Swimming Teacher years ago while my children were little. I got back into the industry in 2015 and have worked at Little Fish Swim School since April 2016. I have my AUSTSWIM qualifications and enjoy teaching children of all ages.

What I love most about what I do: The thing I love the most about what I do is giving children the confidence to enjoy the water and learn to swim and seeing the kids try so hard. I love the big smiles and the high fives at the end of the lessons too.

When I’m not in the pool you’ll find me: Playing sports – basketball, bowling and softball; just to name a few.

My perfect weekend: Spending time with family and friends having a few drinks and a BBQ, and most of all I love going camping, especially to Moreton Island.

Qualifications:

  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Infant and Preschool Aquatics
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Aquatics - Access and Inclusion (Disabilities)

Taya Pirlo

Swimming Instructor

I've been a learn to swim and squad teacher since 2015 when I gained my AUSTSWIM qualification. I have always loved the water and was a competitive swimmer as a child. I have now moved on to competitive horse-riding, but I still like to incorporate my love of the water into my life.

What I love most about what I do: I enjoy teaching children how to be safe and calm around the water. I find comfort in knowing that in the event of an accident around the water, the children I have taught would know how to remain safe.

When I’m not in the pool you’ll find me: Studying for my Bachelor of Paramedic Science degree or riding my horse

My Perfect Weekend: At the beach with my puppy, my family and some biscuits and cheese

Qualifications:

  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety
  • AUSTSWIM Competitive Strokes
  • CPR
  • Bluecard

Bubbles and Rocket

Chief Lawn Mowers

You'll see our two resident lawn mowers out in the paddock when you come and visit the swim school. Bubbles and Rocket are Lowline cows that are a great breed as they are friendly, dosile and don't grow too big. These guys are very friendly so go over to the fence and say hi but remember to keep behind the fence and stay away from the white electric tape around the paddock - this is to keep them in! Bubbles is the shorter of the two and Rocket is a bit more crazy. They are both coming up to 3 years old and came from different farms near Dayboro. 

Clare Saunders

Swimming Instructor

I have a varied experience working with children that includes: Nursery Nurse Teaching, Nannying, Primary School Teaching and Learn to Swim Instructing. Yes, I am no ‘spring chicken’ but guarantee incredible passion, creativity, hard work and fun! I joined Little Fish Swim School in 2018 but have been teaching Learn to Swim as well as baby and infants since 2012.                                                                                                                                                                                 

What I love most about what I do: I strive to gain a healthy and positive rapport with all students; especially those lacking in confidence. I have been called a, “Child Whisperer” by a previous employer…quick to ease the apprehensions of a new student. 

When I’m not in the pool you’ll find me: Attempting to be creative in the kitchen or trying activities researched on Pinterest! I would love to study photography; especially black and white landscapes.

My perfect weekend: I enjoy watching movies and would like to visit Yatala Drive-In Theatre one day soon. Not a fan of Sci-Fi but will generally watch most genres. I particularly like Historical Period Drama, Thrillers and Rom-Com. I also love visiting outdoor markets and scenic places like Montville and Maleny. A drive to the Sunshine Coast, bushwalk and picnic is heaven!

Qualifications:

  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Swimming and Water Safety
  • AUSTSWIM Teacher of Infant and Preschool Aquatics
  • Working with Children Blue Card, Queensland
  • CPR