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Opinions Please

(90 Posts)
treas Thu 22-Nov-12 18:18:18

This morning I went to the early bird swim session at the local pool.

On completing my 2 mile swim, [hark at her]grin, pupils from my dd's school were sat on the side waiting for the start of their lesson. These were children from my dd's yr but not her class - she will swim in Januarysad

The pupils were v. v. well behaved when suddenly there was a buzz of chatter as the message "Miss is getting in" passed around the group and I turned to see a woman in her swimming costume walking down the side. She then told the group "No I'm not!"

Anyway! Once I had finished changing I had to go back on poolside to get my googles and saw "Miss" swimming lengths while the children were taught by the hired swimming teachers.

AIBU to think that "Miss" who was in charge of the class should not have been having a freebie swim and should have been keeping an eye on the children in a behaviour rather than swimming teaching capacity?

So really I'd like to know:

1/ How would you feel if your child had been in this lesson?

2/ If IANBU should I raise the issue with the school?

bruffin Fri 23-Nov-12 14:13:16

But the point is though that should anything go wrong (i'm not talking drowning necessarily here either,there could be vomiting, upset tum ... etc) a teacher or TA dressed and dry by the pool or in an adjacent room is going to be able to react immediately.

There will be at least two or more TAs, parent helpers. teachers etc for swimming. We always had at least 3 for 30.

TroublesomeEx Fri 23-Nov-12 14:14:01

I'm guessing the HT knows about it anyway so I wouldn't raise it with the school.

With all the swimming instructors, children and members of the public (who may include parents) would be there to witness it, i can't imagine any teacher would do this without the HT's knowledge/permission.

As much as anything, they'd wonder why she turned up back at school with wet hair and why the children were saying "Miss went swimming" otherwise.

If you don't want the HT/school to know you're doing something, you don't do it in front of the children!!

Alisvolatpropiis Fri 23-Nov-12 15:50:20

Bit odd. I don't recall any of my teachers havig a little private swim whilst the class had a lesson when I was at promary school.

treas Sat 24-Nov-12 18:28:03

NoraGainesborough - just taking the mick out of myself - glad you appreciated it.

bruffin - No only one TA and the two teachers hired externally.

FolkGirl - Actually the school has pool entirely to themselves, they were just early and crossed over with the end of the early bird session. Usually no members of the public to witness.

Can't help feeling she didn't feel comfortable doing it as she outright lied in front of me to her pupils.

helpyourself Sat 24-Nov-12 18:30:31

Why would you notice this, let alone mind? confused

Rudolphstolemycarrots Sat 24-Nov-12 18:38:48

I think it depends if any of the children needed help or if the swimming class sizes were too big and could have been made smaller with her help. Other wise fair doos, I agree it sets a good example

treas Sat 24-Nov-12 18:56:55

helpyourself - because she was supposed to be minding the children which she most definitely was not.

I expect people would view it differently if it was their children who were not supervised as having spoken to friends whose children go to the school have had a completely different opinion.

Also wonder what position it would put the school in if there was an incident as a parent might claim negligence.

NoTeaForMe Sat 24-Nov-12 19:10:40

I can't believe that she is supposed to do that. But where is the other member of staff? Surely there should have been two of them for the coach and being with the children while they got changed...maybe they take it in turns? One supervises poolside and one has a swim?

helpyourself Sat 24-Nov-12 20:10:36

They were having a lesson with a teacher?confused
Another teacher, who was there to get them to and from the pool and supervise changing was swimming. Still confused

helpyourself Sat 24-Nov-12 20:12:32

having spoken to friends whose children go to the school have had a completely different opinion.

MidniteScribbler Sat 24-Nov-12 20:47:56

Seriously, why the heck is this any of your business? I'm sure that the swimming teachers, being blessed with a tongue in their heads, could have told her to stop swimming if they thought she wasn't doing her job.


treas Sat 24-Nov-12 21:21:12

MidniteScribbler - I am minding my own however, it could very well involve my own child and I am entitled to have a view even if it is not the same as yours.

LivvyPsMum Sat 24-Nov-12 21:27:45

I wouldn't be too chuffed. She was supposedly working, but having a swim instead!

Sparklingbrook Sat 24-Nov-12 21:30:55

Do we know for sure she was supposed to be working though? And not just help for the coach/changing rooms?

ArthurandGeorge Sat 24-Nov-12 21:41:23

I thinkit's unusual but not sure it's wrong.

If the swimming instructors aren't happy then they can speak out either directly or via HT.

Not convinced that a dry teacher sitting in the spectator area reading a book and having a coffee is setting a better example.

NoTeaForMe Sat 24-Nov-12 21:48:59

treas did you see my post?

FightingTheMess Sat 24-Nov-12 22:01:59

Whenever I have accompanied swimming lessons (as a volunteer and now as a trainee teacher) the teachers are sitting outside the pool. They make sure the kids are getting ready and then go outside, i.e. the entrance hall where there a couches and snack bars. They couldn't see the children from there either. So from that point of view I would assume that schools are usually ok with the children being out of view of the teacher. So does swimming make a difference? I don't think so but somehow it still feels a bit weird to me.

treas Sat 24-Nov-12 22:02:51

Sorry NoTeaForMe - I have never seen more than one school staff supervisor for the children. However, there are two external staff swimming teachers teaching the lesson so obviously this is considered enough hmm

treas Sat 24-Nov-12 22:08:00

FightingTheMess - from previous sessions a TA (not the same TA each time) has observed the session from poolside. Just this time this particular TA went in for a swim.

Mainly I think it felt weird to me because she lied to the children about not getting in - why? It would have drawn less attention if she had just said nothing at all.

StellaNova Sat 24-Nov-12 22:15:10

I didn't take from your post that she had lied. I assumed she meant she wasn't getting in with the kids and that's what they understood by her reply. Surely it was obvious she was getting in a pool somewhere otherwise why would she have a costume on?

ArthurandGeorge Sat 24-Nov-12 22:18:11

That's what I thought, Stella. Also there was a gap when you were not witness to what went on.

kenanddreary Sat 24-Nov-12 22:30:31

No, no, no! This is just wrong on so many levels and I am shocked that the school are ok with this.

The teacher/TA (and incidentally there should be two of them not one) should be at the side of the pool assisting in supervision and ready to help should they be needed for asthma attacks, cramp, children falling out with each other and getting upset (a common occurrence) and anything else that may arise. The teachers from the school know the children far better than a swimming instructor who meets them once a week for a short period of time and is better equipped to sort out any problems. The teacher/TA should have a risk assessment, inhalers and mobile phone handy. If they are required to assist they should certainly not have to be called away from their fitness session in the pool!

Basic health and safety regulations in my LA insist on the above. In fact, teachers and TAs are regularly involved in the swimming instruction too.

And apart from health and safety...this is a PE lesson and the teacher should be watching and recording notes in order to be able to assess the progress of the children!! How on earth can proper feedback be given to parents either verbally or in school reports if the teacher hasn't bothered to watch the swimming lessons?

I have certainly never 'sat in the spectator area reading a book and having a coffee'! The lessons are only 30 minutes usually. How on earth does this teacher swim, get herself dried and dressed and be ready to ensure the children get out of the pool, shower and sort themselves out?!

YANBU - this is utter madness.

treas Sat 24-Nov-12 22:39:27

kenanddreary - thank you. It's nice to hear from someone who understands my reason for questioning this.

kenanddreary Sat 24-Nov-12 22:45:57

No worries treas smile - as a teacher I am not happy to hear this is happening and as a parent I wouldn't be happy about it. As I said it doesn't happen in my LA (which is a very large one!) and we also have to attend swimming health and safety training which certainly doesn't stipulate that swimming lessons are an opportunity for teachers to have their own leisure time!! Anyway - this is still 'directed time' for teachers. It's no different to walking out of school in the middle of the day and heading off to McD's for a quick burger.

I would definitely have a word with the HT and ask them to explain this situation and how if fits with the PE and off-site trips policies. smile

Hope this is helpful.

treas Sat 24-Nov-12 22:57:56

kenanddreary - yes v. helpful. Couldn't quite understand all the too cool for school responses I was getting - though each to their own.

Think if I'd said the children had been left in front of a dvd for an entire lesson there would have been more of a negative response grin

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