School celebrated for swimming success
Posted: Wed, 22 Nov 2017 13:41
The partnership between a local primary school and leisure centre is being celebrated after its commitment to keeping children safe was recognised at a national level.
Hillbourne Primary School has been named the runner-up in the Primary School of the Year Swim England National Awards. The accolade comes in recognition of the school's work with, Swim England's Swimming Lesson Operator of the year, Everyone Active Poole (Dolphin) Leisure Centre to ensure more young people develop the skills needed to stay safe in water.
The award was presented to teaching assistant Lesley Ison by Leon Taylor (Olympic diver), and Ellie Faulkner (Olympic swimmer) at an event held on Saturday 11th November in the University of Birmingham's Great Hall.
Despite living in an area surrounded by open water, many of the pupils at Hillbourne Primary School do not get regular opportunities to learn to swim. Teachers at the school have made it their mission to ensure students are given the chance to develop their skills by taking them for weekly swimming session at Everyone Active Poole (Dolphin) Leisure Centre.
The lessons are led by Everyone Active swim teaches with support from the school's teaching assistants, who will always get into the pool to help less confident pupils.
Hillbourne Primary School has been swimming at the centre for the past eight years, during which time more than 700 pupils have been taught to swim. Many of these have also achieved Swim England's national target of leaving primary school able to swim 25 metre unaided.
Lesley, Teaching Assistant at Hillbourne School said; "I am very proud to be part of the Hillbourne team supporting swimming. We could not have got the runner-up award without the support of Everyone Active Poole. The ceremony was amazing, our swim team are the best!"
Lesley has worked as a teaching assistant at Hillbourne Primary School for 20 years and has been a swimming instructor for all of the eight years that swimming lessons have taken place at the Dolphin Centre. For ten years prior to that Lesley taught swimming at other local pools. She is a wonderful swimming mentor with a caring and calm approach in the water whilst helping the pupils learn to swim. The staff and pupils at the school are delighted that Lesley has received this award in recognition for all her hard work over the years.
Jacqui Tillman, Everyone Active's Group Swim Manager, said: "Hillbourne Primary is a fantastic school. Its teachers are extremely enthusiastic about encouraging their pupils to learn to swim, and their support makes a big difference to the children's development.
We have taught students who have never been swimming before and who have been afraid of the water, but with the support of swim teachers and colleagues from the school, they have learnt a valuable life skill. The school thoroughly deserves this award."