Rescuers in Training

Students preparing to become lifeguard certified.

Susan Goumba

Students preparing to become lifeguard certified.

NooR Fatima, Editor

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Students are diving into the new school year with Brentwood High School’s newly introduced Lifeguarding Class. The class is taught by Red Cross certified lifeguard instructor, Mrs. Goumba, and assisting teacher, Mrs. Folz, in the Ross pool during first period.

Over a decade ago, when the pool was first installed in the high school, Mrs. Goumba, a physical education teacher, presented the idea of a Water Safety Instructor Class and a Sports Medicine Class at a curriculum committee meeting. At the time, there wasn’t a possibility to run the program. However, with encouragement from Superintendent Richard Loeschner, Mrs. Goumba proposed her idea to pilot a Lifeguard Training Class to the curriculum committee again this year. She explained that the Lifeguard Training course and certification would broaden the scope of Brentwood High School’s physical education curriculum.

After much anticipation, the program was approved! Superintendent Mr. Loescher, Assistant Superintendents Dr. Akil and Mrs. Palmer, and District Guidance Coordinator Mr. Abenes, were very supportive and aided in the implementation of the course.

The elective is a half-year course. Students have the option to take it first and second quarters, or third and fourth quarters. By taking the class, students not only meet their physical education requirement for the year, but also have an opportunity to take another elective for the remaining half of the school year. Although Mrs. Goumba and Ms. Folz are present during the entirety of the class, a Lifeguard is also on duty while this class is taught.

The target audience for the elective are students who have a proficiency in swimming and are capable of strengthening their swimming skills. More importantly, they would be trained in rescue techniques to qualify them as lifeguards. Upon successfully completing the course, students leave the class as certified Lifeguards.

Another upside to the course is that students will also receive certification in CPR for the Professional Rescuer and First Aid during the school day, without the hurdle of cost and time. After students graduate from the course, many opportunities are open to them, including new summer employment. This includes jobs with local employers who need these vital services.

The Lifeguard Training Class has spots available in the third and fourth quarter section for any student who is a good swimmer. Anyone interested in signing up for the course is advised to contact Mrs. Goumba in the Sonderling Gym, Mrs. Folz in the Ross gym, or their guidance counselor.