Every Child Should Be Able to Swim!
Let's talk specifically about a program to help our most vulnerable kids and use all three of our municipal pools for instruction. We will need qualified instructors of the highest level that care about the kiddos and want them all to learn how to swim. There are some very severe special needs kids within Santa Monica schools, both public and private. It is way easier to teach children when they are smaller, have less fear, are less self conscious, and less concern about what others think of them, beginning at the first grade level.
For our children without special needs, swim lessons can even begin in third grade. Pasadena, for instance, has an excellent program that Santa Monica can emulate. Each child receives 15 special water safety and learn-to-swim lessons. They learn safety around pools, the beach and other bodies of water. No child should ever drown, but the fact is that 10 people drown every day in the United States. According to Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, participation in formal swim lessons leach skills that can save lives and reduce the likelihood of childhood drowning by 88%. Once students are certified swimmers they would receive free passes to our municipal pools as a reward and to help them develop a love of swimming as a life goal.
It is proven that swimming will help our special needs children with their verbal skills and improve their in-class concentration. Swimming does make a difference for children of all abilities.
This is an attainable quality of life issue.