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Young swimmers will miss out on lessons this autumn due to staff cuts

News | Published:

CUTS to Beau Sejour Swim School will mean there will be a shortage of places this September.

Beau Sejour swimming pool. (28442972)

However Education, Sport & Culture is looking into the matter and president Matt Fallaize said he hoped they could find a way to get the school up and running again fully soon.

In a letter sent to parents, a swim school spokesperson said they were reducing how many sessions they ran.

'Unfortunately as a result, not all swimmers will be successful in securing a place in September,' they wrote.

'It is with regret that lessons will not be available for school age children after 6pm on Mondays, after 4pm Tuesdays, after 6pm on Wednesdays and after 3.30pm on Thursdays in the small pool and wings at Beau Sejour, together with all classes held on Saturday mornings between 8am and 11.30am.'

The school will try to find places for as many pupils as possible, but recognises this will not be enough.

The letter does refer to the pandemic as the cause of the cuts and stated that there were limitations on staffing due to post-Covid States rules.

'The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in significant challenges for all of us – none more so than swim school, and this will affect how we run our swimming lessons going forward,' they wrote.

'Safety continues to be our number one priority, both in and out of the water, and we want to make sure that when we return, we have everything in place to maintain our reputation for delivering quality lessons in a secure and enjoyable environment.'

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The school is also moving its registration process online.

'Please rest assured, we will continue to work hard behind the scenes to rebuild our programme over the coming months,' they wrote.

'We realise this is likely to disappoint many of you, and can only apologise if you are one of the unlucky ones, however, we hope you understand that in true #GuernseyTogether spirit. We are doing this to support our community, to keep you safe and provide you with a trusted environment, within the resources we have available.'

'These are incredibly difficult decisions that have had to be made and we hope you understand, and can bear with us during these challenging times.'

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Education, Sport & Culture President Matt Fallaize said they were looking into the matter and expected to make a statement later on today.

‘In the past 24 hours the committee became aware of the restricted schedule at Beau Sejour Swim School,' he said.

'This was caused by staffing challenges, which arose as a result of Covid-19. I can reassure the community that the committee has not in any way cut funding of Swim School or any other service at Beau Sejour. I have asked staff to provide me with a full briefing of the circumstances and will meet with them this afternoon to find a way to resolve the current challenges so that we can get swim school back up and running fully and quickly.'

A petition has been started by a mum of one of the swimmers to try and save the classes, which has already garnered more than 300 signatures since the petition started yesterday.

Juliet Pouteaux

By Juliet Pouteaux
News reporter

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