By Dr. Richard Canfield
Interim Pool Report from the Pool Planning Workgroup
The Superintendent’s Pool Planning workgroup met on three occasions, with the last meeting held on August 5, 2014. The workgroup developed an interim report that was presented to the School Committee on August 20, 2014. The entire report is now available for view: Interim Pool Report PDF 2.
Excerpts from the Interim School Report follow.
Work group members represent a wide cross section of stakeholders and includes Michelle Austin, SPS Director of Finance and Business Operations; Guy Boucher, Town of Sandwich Recreation Director; Trish Cundiff, Director/Owner of Aquasafe Swim Programs; Alan Hall, SPS Director of Facilities; Neil Murphy, SPS Athletic Administrator; Wendy Pierce, SPS Aquatics Director; Janice Souza, Town of Sandwich Asst. Recreation Director; Jan Timmons, Director of the Sandwich Council on Aging; and Superintendent Dr. Richard Canfield.
The following essential understandings helped to guide the workgroup:
- The workgroup appreciates the commitment of taxpayers to repair the swimming pool facility. Properly managed, the pool can be a tremendous asset to the schools and the community.
- With the closing of the Sandwich Community School, the pool is now solely the fiscal responsibility of the Sandwich Public Schools.
- The first priority for school use is the students.
- Pools are expensive to operate. Therefore, it behooves the school district to develop community use on a fee basis to help offset operating costs.
- Improvements to the mechanical and operational systems will help track and manage expenses.
- The pool will be operated in partnership with the district’s Director of Facilities to ensure safe and sanitary operations, and the Athletic Department led by the Athletic Administrator and the Aquatics Director who would be responsible for scheduling, staffing and programming plans.
- The district has an obligation to operate the pool safely and to minimize legal exposure by properly staffing the pool for its anticipated use.
At its last meeting, the workgroup heard from Alan Hall about progress on the pool. The district remains confident that the pool will be available for the start of the swim team season. This is a first priority as the district seeks to avoid having to rent pool time at another location for the teams. The workgroup, feels that community use might begin by the 1st of February. Much work remains to structure staffing and plan programs for community use. There is particular need to be strategic in planning to ensure that the fee structure covers the proportional operating costs between school and community.
An article in the Sandwich Enterprise features photos of some of the work-in-progress.