Why are some Freshmen swimming and others not?

Sohini Karmakar

Swimming, the new sport for incoming high school students was something that excited each and every one of them. As exciting as it may sound, this year will be the first year where some classes may not receive the chance to participate in the swimming unit.. The lack of opportunity for swimming to many incoming freshman students is largely due to the expiration of licenses for some PE teachers.

 In an interview, PE instructor Craig Ellegood had said that he feels bad for the students who don’t get the chance to swim. However, he also mentioned that it was always a safety hazard as there was never a lifeguard posted at our school. 

“We are still continuing our normal activities, but as students mostly associated fitness with running, swimming was something that gave another chance to get some exercise in.” In contrast, he spoke about how there was always a sigh of relief for the entire PE department as soon as the swimming unit had ended, as there was a chance of potential harm that could be caused to those students who are not exposed to the water. 

“There was always that one thing on your head that it just takes one thing to happen, and the Cupertino pool is not meant for beginning swimmers as it has such a small area of shallow water” said Mr. Ellegood with a smile. Although his particular classes aren’t swimming, the other freshman classes are still taking part in the unit.

There had always been a mix of students who had enjoyed their time in the pool versus the students who had not, considering the many factors like how much of a time pressure it was to change and go to their next class. “I absolutely hated going to class afterwards with wet hair and I used to freeze inside, also I was not a very good swimmer, and I stayed in the shallow end most of the time,” said Annie Nguyen, who is currently a senior enjoying her last few months here at CHS. Another Senior, Mayukha Vellanki, who previously swam for 13 years mentioned a very important issue regarding girls and being on their periods during the swimming unit. “Swimming was fun, different and something that I was good at, but we  girls would be on our periods and it would be such an inconvenience during tests and block days because we had to makeup all the missing work after a certain number of days passed. Also, the whole class knew why we were sitting out and it would just be awkward.” 

While not everyone was a fan of the “swimming” unit at school, juniors  Zahan and Rohit said that swimming was very fun for them as well as something different from middle school. CHS allowed them to have the opportunity to take a dip in the pool, whereas outside of school it was hard to find time to do that.