Swimming too dangerous for Canadian middle school students

IronMikeIronMike BostonCharter Member
edited June 2014 in General Discussion
From http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/swimming-archery-at-camp-too-dangerous-for-students-school-says-1.2659573

A Toronto teacher says his Grade 8 students are unhappy that a three-day graduation trip to a nature camp in Bancroft, Ont., next month was cancelled due to the school board's safety concerns over activities such as swimming and archery.

Lenny Chiro, who teaches at Amesbury Middle School, was preparing his class for the annual trip to Camp Walden when the school board cancelled it, citing safety concerns.

"It's confusing why at the last moment we're told that we're not in compliance with safety rules, when the facility that we're going to has an exemplary track record and is extremely well supervised," Chiro said Friday in an interview with CBC Radio's Metro Morning.

Chiro said Amesbury's Grade 8 students have been making the trip to Camp Walden for seven years as a fun way to mark graduation from middle school.

He described Camp Walden as an exclusive facility that reduces its rates for the school to make the trip possible, at a cost of $150 per student.

Chiro said he was making final preparations for the June 10 trip when the school board's superintendent asked for proof that safety requirements about activities such as swimming and archery had been met.

Without sufficient proof, students would be unable to take part in many of the camp's activities. The students decided that without the activities, the trip would not be worth the cost.

"There weren't many [activities] left except 'swat the mosquito,'" said Chiro. "As a result, all those activities were taken out of the trip. And basically the students decided, 'No, this is not worth us going on this trip.'"

Instead, the students go on a one-day trip to Niagara Falls.

Just here troubling deaf heaven with my bootless cries...

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Comments

  • DanSimonelliDanSimonelli San Diego CASenior Member
    superintendent needs to get out more!!
  • flystormsflystorms Memphis, TNMember
    It's so sad that people are afraid of so much these days. Kids just need to get out and play.
  • KaneKane Member
    Very sad...we have already created one generation of children wrapped in cotton wool now we are following it up with another.
  • IronMikeIronMike BostonCharter Member
    People used to think we were horrible parents as we'd sit on a bench under a tree at a kids playground and let our young ones jump and hang and fall all over the place. I'd actually see other parents get on the edge of their benches as my 4- or 5-year old would leap from one high-point (all of 4 or 5ft off the ground) to another, looking around for the inattentive parent. If my kids fell, they bounced. They cried a bit, but they got over it (the trick is to laugh, because if you run to them all concerned, then they tended to cry more...granted, this also made us look horrible, laughing at our kids for falling on their butts).

    Just here troubling deaf heaven with my bootless cries...

  • Iron Mike living up to your name
  • TimDexTimDex Member
    Kids today are too molly coddled! I was showing my nephew a tree I used to climb and fall out of rather regularly, when I was his age. My sister was horrified at my enthusiasm for him to follow in my footsteps. Im perfectly normal, mostly!
  • suziedodssuziedods Mem​ber
    At the pool last night waiting for the summer league kids to finish. Line of cars, LINE of cars out the parking lot,because apparently the children can swim but can't walk.
    #2- about 12 kids STANDING in the showers... just standing.We are in a massive drought, although it seems to have gone off the radar in the news, and these children are just standing there. Someone said, "uh guys, we're in a drought, , stop letting the water run." father of some child says " but they'll get cold" .... Self--banging head on wall.
    GRAB A COAT!.. mollycoddled indeed.

    Looking for the next big thing.. ... @suzieswimcoach
    www.suziedodsswimcoaching.com

  • SpacemanspiffSpacemanspiff Dallas, TexasSenior Member
    IronMike wrote:
    People used to think we were horrible parents as we'd sit on a bench under a tree at a kids playground and let our young ones jump and hang and fall all over the place.
    So after chasing my firstborn around pools shouting, "WATCH OUT!" "DON'T GET TOO CLOSE!" "GET AWAY FROM THE EDGE!" "CAREFUL!!" I realized, there is a better way to do this. Instead of telling him what not to do, he needs to develop a healthy respect for the water. So I the next time we were at a pool, I didn't follow him around or say a thing. I just changed into my swim suit and waited. Eventually, he did what we feared. He got too close and fell in. I ran to the edge, but did not rescue him. Instead, I watched his eyes grow big as saucers. He sank to the 3 foot bottom. Then I waited what seemed like an eternity, but was probably like 3-5 seconds before I jumped in and snatched him out.

    That was the last time he got anywhere near the water until after he learned to swim. It's like sticking your hand in the fire. You only do it once. I did the same with all three of my kids. I was concerned that they might be afraid of the water when they grew up, but it didn't happen.

    "Lights go out and I can't be saved
    Tides that I tried to swim against
    Have brought be down upon my knees
    Oh I beg, I beg and plead..."

  • jendutjendut Charter Member
    No to be a wet blanket but any parents who were upset about the decision (in the original story) would be the first ones to sue the heck out of everyone involved after an incident. I imagine the camp simply asked the school to swim test or something instead of sending everyone into the water no questions asked, but that is the waterfront director in me speaking, I guess. I have no answer for the archery issue!
  • IronMikeIronMike BostonCharter Member
    @suziedods, I am constantly acting the father in the showers. I yell at the kids to turn off the water and get the hell out if they're not going to wash themselves.

    I'll also mention to parents (normally opposite-sex parent) outside the locker room that there are kids just standing in the shower doing nothing, and if the mom needs me to go in and yell at kid named X, then I'm willing to do it.

    I also get upset when they swear anywhere where I can hear it. What's happened to kids nowadays? When I was growing up, we had adult-radar, and would stop using "colorful metaphors" when an adult was within earshot of us.

    "Get the hell outta my front yard!" *shakes cane*
    dpm50

    Just here troubling deaf heaven with my bootless cries...

  • wendyv34wendyv34 Vashon, WASenior Member
    I manage a busy outdoor pool in a big park. The parking lots are ~1/3 mile from the pool and on a busy day, a person might have to walk 1/2 mile to the pool if the lots are full. It's amazing how many people complain about the walk (through a forest populated by eagles and along a beach where orcas can be seen) and ask if they can park any closer. The most common excuse is that it's hard for kids to walk that far….since they are driven door to door everywhere else! When lap swimmers complain about it, I tell them "you get extra bonus workout points for walking to the pool today!" Then I laugh.

    The most memorable conversation about this was with a woman from out of town who was bringing her kids to a swim meet. I was describing where to park and to allow time for a 1/2 mile walk to the pool. She said "you expect competitive swimmers to WALK half a mile?" Yep. Really. I assured her that every kid at the meet would be walking that far, so her kids would not be at a disadvantage from having walked for 10 minutes before the meet.

    I seem to remember riding my bike a couple of miles to swim practice as a kid, after I had finished my paper route. It obviously didn't kill me. In fact, walking or biking to school beat the heck out of riding the bus, unless it was pouring.

    I wonder what the mortality rates are for supervised swimming & archery vs. obesity related illnesses?

    It's always a bad hair day when you work at a pool.

  • IronMikeIronMike BostonCharter Member
    My annoying kids used to complain about that @wendyv34 when we'd go to the mall. My wife loves walking so she'd immediately go to the back of the lot and park, then they'd all walk. "Mom, it's so far and hot...waaaaa."

    So she timed how long it took from entering the mall parking lot to getting to the front door. From the very back, about 30 seconds. From the rare spot she found in the front (and the time it took to drive around/follow people to that close spot), multiple minutes.

    "Waaaaa...at least we don't have to walk in the heat that whole way." There's no pleasing kids these days.

    (My kids are used to this now to the point that my 17- and 19-year old automatically park to the rear of any parking lot just so they can get out of the car and into the store quicker. Ha!)

    Just here troubling deaf heaven with my bootless cries...

  • dpm50dpm50 PA, U.S.Senior Member

    One day, as I was passing a school entrance, I noticed a long line of cars--parents dropping kids off at school. That was more or less expected (although when my sibs and I were kids, if we missed the school bus, we knew not to even go back home, just start walking to school).

    Then one driver cut out of the line--and I at first assumed he had no kids and was tired of waiting in the traffic. But no. He did have a kid, and when he reached the door of the school, he double parked to let the kid out. (Heaven forbid the kid should walk the 25 or so yards before reaching the door.)

    As for this overnight camp w/ swimming and archery--my parents enrolled us in a rec program with both of those sports. They taught us that we needed arm guards, and there were lots of missed targets... no injuries either to swimmers or archers that I recall.

  • JenAJenA Charter Member

    Speaking as a (recovering) Canadian teacher who has taken 50+ schoolkids hiking and camping overnight, I imagine that the issue was one of ratio or school board safety policies not being met.

    School boards create policies such as: "if the kids are between the ages of x and y, you must have one adult per z children". It's probably the case that the teacher imagined the camp would provide the waterfront staff and the camp imagined the school would.

    The school board's fieldtrip policies wouldn't been reactionary. They most likely would have been established years prior. It would have been the teacher and principal's responsibility to ensure that the fieldtrip and all related activities met school board policies.

  • worthyadvisorworthyadvisor Chicago, ILMember

    wendyv34 said:
    The most memorable conversation about this was with a woman from out of town who was bringing her kids to a swim meet. I was describing where to park and to allow time for a 1/2 mile walk to the pool. She said "you expect competitive swimmers to WALK half a mile?" Yep. Really. I assured her that every kid at the meet would be walking that far, so her kids would not be at a disadvantage from having walked for 10 minutes before the meet.

    For able-bodied folks, yeah, I'd be like "Seriously, just walk." But I would hope that your pool has accommodations for those who can't walk a 1/2 mile (like me)!

    JenA

    I'm the Wiccan Christian that was profiled in USMS's Swimmer Magazine in 2017. Soon, I'll be moving to Zurich, Switzerland. Also, I pray to St. Adjutor, the patron saint of open water swimmers.

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