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Water Safety Instructors

Milwaukee Recreation Swim Class

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  General information for Milwaukee Recreation swim programs

What to Bring — Swimsuit, towel, and swim cap. Swim caps must be worn by all individuals entering the pool. Each participant will recieve a swim cap with their swim class registration.

Height Requirements (Ages 6-14) — Students must meet the listed minimum height for each pool. Most pools have a 48” height requirement. For youth who are 42”-48” a six-inch booster step may be available. Children not able to comfortably stand in the shallow end of the pool (with or without a booster step) should be enrolled in an Infant, Lil’ Squirts, Tiny-Tot or Advanced Tiny-Tot class where a parent/guardian must accompany the child in the water.

Water Temperature — Normal water temperature is 78–82° F. The only exceptions are North Division, Vincent, and Marshall therapy pools which range 86-89° F.

Locker Rooms — Participants may bring a padlock for lockers. All swim gear must be removed after each class. Children five years of age or under may accompany their parent/ guardian in the locker room. Children ages six and up should use the locker rooms that correspond to their gender identity. Pre-Testing — A pre-test is given to swimmers in levels 2-6 on the first day of class to ensure that the swimmer is in the appropriate level. Instructors reserve the right to recommend alternate classes for those students unable to complete pre-tests.

Testing — Testing of swim skills learned generally occurs during the second to last lesson, and last lesson. Parents/caregivers will be given certificates on the last day indicating which level to enroll in next.

Infant and Tiny-Tot Requirements — Diapers: Regular disposable diapers are not permitted as they disintegrate in the pool. Either disposable“Little swimmers” or reusable swim diapers are required.

Parent Attendance — Parents/caregivers must accompany their children in the water for all Tiny-Tot and Adv. Tiny-Tot, and is encouraged but not required for Lil. Lv 1, Lil. Lv 2, Level 1, and Level 2 classes. Second Child in Class — If a parent/caregiver has more than one child enrolled in Tiny-Tot or Advanced Tiny-Tot classes, the second child must be accompanied by a- responsible person 16 years of age or older.

Make-up Policy — Milwaukee Recreation works diligently to ensure that our pools stay in working operation to offer consistency in our programs. In the event that more than one class is cancelled due to circumstances we cannot control, we will work to make-up the missed class at a later date. When a make-up date is unavailable, credits for the missed class will be applied to your Milwaukee Recreation account.

  Parent/Adult Participation

We want you and your young swimmer to feel comfortable and to get the most out of each class. You know your child best and are encouraged to make the decision of how to support them during their swim experience. If you have questions or concerns, do not hesitate to speak with the instructor to develop a plan or call Milwaukee Recreation's aquatics staff at 414-647-6053.


When is Parent/Adult involvement REQUIRED?

Parent child classes require an adult or responsible person for each child (16 year or older) to be in the water supporting the child. Required: Infant, Tiny-Tot, Lil’ Squirts, Advanced Tot. Recommended: Little Level One.

During OPEN SWIM, Children, age 7 and under and required to have an adult with them one-on-one, in the water, within arm’s reach AT ALL TIMES.


Parent/Adult IN WATER:

Benefits of being in the pool with your young swimmer: Increased encouragement and repetition of skill practice.

Increased comfort and support, this is a great time to help your child grow their listening skills and practice their swimming skills.

Time to bond and have focused time together.


Parent/Adult in POOL ROOM/ OBSERVATION AREA (Not in Water):

Benefits of being in pool room / observation area:
- Watching from a distance allows some students to develop a trusting relationship with the instructor.
- Allowing students more independence while still having you in the room for support/confidence.


Parent NOT in Pool Area or in water:

Some students might be distracted by their adult being in the pool area and, like school, dropping your child off and leaving the pool area might be what creates the best learning environment for your swimmer.

Are you an advanced swimmer and interested in sharing your gifts with the community? Milwaukee Recreation is hiring swimming instructors!

Opportunities exist for raises, further training, and advancement, and working hours can be scheduled around school hours and extracurricular activities.

Not a Swim Instructor yet? We have a class coming up each season!

Opportunities exist for raises, further training, and advancement, and working hours can be scheduled around school hours and extracurricular activities.

Milwaukee Recreation has highly competitive rates for water safety instructors (WSI) compared to other organizations in the area (starting pay rate is $16 per hour).

Do you already have your WSI certification? Apply to be swim instructor here! (click "View Recreation Positions" and search "Swim" for all aquatics openings)

Become certified:

If you are interested in becoming a water safety instructor, you can register for the training here. The course costs just $160 for Milwaukee residents ($240 for non-residents), but it is completely free if you commit to working as a WSI with Milwaukee Recreation.

To be eligible for the course, candidates must:

  • Attend a pre-course session to demonstrate swimming competency in six strokes: Front Crawl, Back Crawl, Breaststroke, Sidestroke, Elementary Backstroke and Butterfly. 25 yards of each stroke to be demonstrated.
  • The pre-course session is approximately one hour. If this pre-course session does not fit your schedule, an alternate day and time can be arranged by appointment. If you do not successfully complete the pretest, you will be issued a FULL REFUND.

Blended Learning Option:

  • Complete up to 9 hours of online learning before the first in-water course date. Provide proof of completion with either a screen shot or a printed certificate.
  • All 3 course dates are mandatory without exception.

Instructor-Led Learning Option:

  • Complete 2 hours of online learning before the last class session.
  • Attend all in-person class sessions.

The type of course offered may change season to season. Please see the registration description for details.

Questions?

Denzel Shareef

Aquatics Supervisor
Phone: (414) 647-6075
Email: Denzel [at] mkerec.net

(When emailing our staff, please replace the "[at]" with a traditional "@" symbol. Ex: Staff@mkerec.net)

Contact

Phone: 414-647-6050
Email: Swim [at] mkerec.net

(When emailing our staff, please replace the "[at]" with a traditional "@" symbol. Ex: Staff@mkerec.net)

Aquatics Training and Job Opportunities

If you would like to earn extra money and advance your swimming skills while protecting the safety of others, sign up for one of our Lifeguard Training Classes. Or, if you think you'd like to teach others to swim enroll in a Water Safety Instructor Course. These American Red Cross courses are typically offered in Fall, Winter and Spring. Employment opportunities are available for individuals who successfully complete each course and become certified according to the American Red Cross criteria. Join the Milwaukee Recreation aquatics team!

For more information, call 414-647-6075 or email: Denzel [at] mkerec.net. (When emailing our staff, please replace the "[at]" with a traditional "@" symbol. Ex: Staff@mkerec.net)

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