Swim Fail

Lily just finished up two weeks in beginning swimming at our community pool. I had hoped by the end of the class she’d be able to float, but alas, it was not to be. She refuses to attempt anything that involves having her feet off the floor of the pool unless she is being held by someone. As you can imagine, she did not pass the swimming test at the end of the session to move on to the next training level. Check out the awesome “certificate of completion” she got.

“Lily has completed Learn-to-Swim Level 1″ “sign up for Level 1″. Completing a level implies moving on to the next level. That’s the most sneaky way to say “Your daughter failed swimming” I’ve ever seen. If she “completed” it, she should be in “Level 2″. Considering she failed it, a certificate of completion is ridiculous. All she “completed” was two weeks of swimming, and I’m not so sure that deserves a certificate. A report card? Maybe, but a piece of paper that says “Congratulations”? No.

“Congratulations! You didn’t learn how to swim!”

That’s how I read it.



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10 Responses to Swim Fail

  1. Trigem

    True but they don’t want to have to listen to all the crying three year olds who don’t pass and see the others get certificates.

    I’ve taught that level it is easier on everyone if they all walk out with something on the last day. Our certificates were different for the two groups however.

    • I think I wouldn’t have found it as humorous or ridiculous if they’d handed out report cards instead of certificates. Why does my kid even need a certificate for a 2 week swimming course? It’s silly.

      • Trigem

        We did essentially give a report card. A page with a list of requirements for that level and anything not checked had not been passed.That was in addition to the certificate though.

        I don’t think kids can participate in anything anymore without a certificate or trophy or something. If I had kept them all for my 3 kids ( 14, 11, and 3) my house would look like an episode of hoarders. Even my 3 year old threw her reading certificate from the summer reading program away after a couple of days.

  2. When my mom taught swimming, I think they only handed out participation “certificates”. Basically it was not a pass or fail thing, they would let parents know whether or not they should let the child repeat the course, or move on.

    Most swimming programs offer progressive teaching, meaning they enforce the basics and add only a few techniques each time. Also, it goes by age appropriate activities, so for example they grouped the kids by age, 3 and under, 3-5 years, 6-8 years, 9-11 years, 12-15 years. So signing her up for swimming will probably place her still in a “beginners” class, but she will be with 3-5 year olds. Also she won’t really know the difference because just about every swimming class has all the basics – bobbing, blowing bubbles, fish tag, guppy races, etc etc….

  3. Katie S

    We have done the parent child swim classes at the Y off and on since we joiuned when M was 12 months. Each class is usually around 7 weeks long and each time you get a certificate saying they completed that course and what to sign up for next time. With the first level being the same for 6 m to 24 m it is easy to think your kid is never getting out of that level. By 24 m you still get to be in the pool with your kid for the next year. 3 is when they finally start doing the pool with floaties by them selves. :-) But knowing my son he will still want me to be in there with him. :-)

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