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Young swimmers have been turned into young leaders thanks to a successful QEGS scheme

By Ashbourne News Telegraph  |  Posted: February 17, 2014

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A SCHEME which sees pupils from Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School take on leadership roles in sporting and fitness activities has proven so successful it is being extended.

Staff at Ashbourne Leisure Centre have co-ordinated the project, which encourages pupils from the Green Road school to help younger children with their swimming lessons as part of the Learn to Swim scheme.

Young Sports leaders from QEGS are recruited to take part in the pilot scheme, which originated as an idea by swimming teacher Darren Cartwright.

The leisure centre’s swim co-ordinator Ann Smith, along with QEGS Teacher Leanne Clayton took on the project and organised it so that two pupils have been in the water, during their own time, from 4pm until 5.30pm each week day and on a Saturday morning.

There is a change over period at the beginning of each term and after each session the swimming teacher signs a card as proof of attendance.

The swimming teachers are in regular contact with their Teacher, the pupils and the young swimmers to ensure that everyone has a safe, positive, constructive experience.

Mrs Smith said it has got off to a good start, so much so that the decision has been made to take the scheme forward and make it a regular part of the calendar.

She said: “The Scheme has been so successful that it has been adopted on a regular basis.

“The Young Leaders have been absolutely brilliant. They have shown maturity and compassion in assisting all the children in the water.

“In an age where young people tend to get some bad press it’s a pleasure to watch these pupils coaxing and helping the children in the pool.

“Many of these young leaders I taught when they were younger.”

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