Parent Teacher Magazine Gaston County Schools May/June 2018 - Page 5

Time to “Waterproof” Gaston County Kids through Swim Programs Programs offer a mix of fun, physical activity and safety to create a lifelong love of swimming As the season turns, the Gaston County Family YMCA encourages children and parents throughout Gaston County to explore the many benefits of swimming, while also keeping safety top of mind. In Y swim programs, participants can enjoy water sports, enhance or learn new techniques, meet new friends and develop confidence, while also learning safety skills that can save lives. “It’s never too early to get children involved in swimming—it’s an important for safety reasons, but also a great way to keep active and healthy,” said Jeff Pesesky, Aquatics Director, Stowe Family YMCA. “There are so many options for parents, but the best place to start is by learning basic water safety skills that helps get kids familiar with the water that often continues with swim lessons and competitive swim programs and can even lead to a career.” As part of National Water Safety Month in May, the Y encourages parents to take an active role in fostering a relationship between their children and swimming—beginning with water safety. Following are safety tips to practice when in and around the water: n Only swim when and where there is a lifeguard on duty; never swim alone. n Adults should constantly and actively watch their children. n Inexperienced or non-swimmers should wear a Coast Guard- approved life jacket. n Parents or guardians of young children should be within an arm’s reach. n Children and adults should not engage in breath holding activities. In addition to learning lifesaving water safety skills, swimming is a great way to increase physical activity. Swimming also motivates children to strive for self-improvement, teaches goal orientation and cultivates a positive mental attitude and high self-esteem. It also teaches life lessons of sport and sportsmanship, so that children can learn how to work well with teammates and coaches and how to deal with winning and losing. As a leading nonprofit committed to youth development, the Y is a leader in providing swim lessons and water safety. The Y continues to help youth and adults experience the joy and benefits of swimming, so they can be healthy, confident and secure in the water. There are a variety of programs to choose, including group and private swim lessons, swim club and swim team, family swims, water aerobics and more! To ensure that everyone has an opportunity to participate, financial assistance is available to those in need to help cover the costs. To learn more about the Gaston County Family YMCA swim programs, please visit us online at gastonymca.org. School Safety Gaston County Police School Resource Officers “We are proud of our partnership with law enforcement here in Gaston County to ensure the safety of our students and employees. Our schools have a comprehensive safety plan, which is reviewed on a regular basis. All of our schools are served by a police resource officer; we have buzz-in entry and visitor check-in systems at all schools; and our campuses are equipped with surveillance cameras. All of these measures are in place to ensure safety. Following the tragedy in Florida, we were in contact with local law enforcement, and they worked with us to increase police presence on and around our school campuses as a precaution. Again, we appreciate the partnership we have with law enforcement and the vigilance of our students, employees, and others to ensure that our schools are as safe and secure as possible.” All students must follow the rules and regulations listed in the Gaston County Student Code of Conduct. The basic purpose of the Student Code of Conduct is to help establish and maintain a safe and orderly environment, which must prevail if learning is to take place. Student Code of Conduct rules are in effect at any school function or school sponsored activity and while students are riding the bus. They apply to any student whose conduct at any time or place has a direct and immediate effect on maintaining order and discipline in school. Students receive a copy of the Student Code of Conduct at the beginning of the school year. All new students registering in the Gaston County Schools for the first time also receive a copy. Parents and students should read the Code of Conduct and make sure they understand the rules and regulations listed. If you have a question about any rule or disciplinary consequence, contact your child’s teacher or the school principal. The Code of Conduct is the short form of the Board of Education’s Code of Student Conduct in the policy manual. The policy manual may be reviewed via the Gaston County Schools’ website. www.gaston.k12.nc.us Parent Teacher Magazine• May/June 2018• 3