Scouts-L Mail Archive for February of 1999: Swimming --another viewpoint
Swimming --another viewpoint
Daniel T. Fitzhenry, Esq.
Wed, 3 Feb 1999 22:21:06 -0500
There are indeed scouts who have a psychological fear of water so
significant that there is minimal possibility that any swimming test
could be passed and those scouts need options --- buts lets distinguish
that situation from a mere lack of swimming ability in which the "cause"
is attributed to "reported" fear of water.
In all fairness to all scouts who overcome anxieties other than
swimming, whether it be fear of camping or fear of heights or many
things (I had one who had a fear of insects --but he's back to summmer
camp for the 5th year); or, to socuts who find out that the fear is
really a fear of failure due to a lack of self-confidence --- which they
later gain confidence through practice and mastery of a subject/skill --
then such swimming waivers need to be given out only when warranted --
and, while the troop commitee serves as the judge here, I think it takes
a lot more than than just a parent or scout saying he his "afraid of
water" and doesn't want to swim -- so, I would get statements from the
family doctor(s)about such --- so that a waiver be given in truly
bonafide cases AND it therefore repects and gives fairness to other
scouts whose efforts to overcome fears and gain new skills through hard
work is properly respected and honored.
Daniel T. Fitzhenry, ASM
Troop 139 Verona PA (10 mi NW of Pgh-along the Allegheny River)