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GC Foster puts spotlight on swimming

Keisha Hill, Staff Reporter

The G.C. Foster College of Physical Education and Sport has partnered with the Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica (ASAJ) to formulate a programme for the development of the aquatics curriculum at the institution.

In this regard, James Wallis a senior lecturer in physical education at the Chelsea School at the University of Brighton, England, visited the island and met with representatives of the college.

Wallis, who was on a six-day visit courtesy of the Sports Development Foundation (SDF), assisted the administration in formulating a full three-four year aquatics curriculum that will train teachers to effectively teach swimming in schools and institutions around the island.

"We are trying to come up with a curriculum for their swim programme," Wallis said. "We want to have some wheels in motion, which will allow the college to turn out highly qualified, able swimmers. These teachers must be able to cascade that message down to the swimmers," he said.

Positive responses

The curriculum will entail a first year, of students learning to swim that will improve their swimming proficiency initially. In the second year, it will require them to focus on their ability to teach swimming. The next level will entail a sustained period of teaching with a group of children aged eight-10 years.

Wallis said the response to the proposals have been positive and if successfully implemented will see a huge increase in the quality of swimming across the island.

However, the only deterrent to the project is the non-functioning swimming pool at the facility.

"If this gets up and running, it will be an incredible achievement for G.C. Foster College," Wallis said.

"The enthusiasm, motivation and drive is there. There is a good relationship between G.C. Foster and the ASAJ but what is lacking are the resources. The missing link is the pool. If we can get the pool situation addressed and the programme that we are developing, I think it will revolutionise swimming in Jamaica," he said.

Acting principal at the G.C. Foster College, Edwin Murray, said they are in discussions with the ASAJ, a group of engineers, pool builders and the SDF to complete repairs on the pool at the college.