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There are some amazing programs out there on water safety and drowning prevention. I was inspired by a couple of stories this week and wanted to share one of them. First,

check out this link: http://www.ajc.com/news/atlanta/atlanta-s-king-middle-296488.html, and read about a forward-thinking principal of a middle school who resurrected an unused Olympic pool in the basement. Danielle S. Battle saw an opportunity to increase the number of African-American children who can swim (a demographic group that drowns at 2.4 times the rate of white children of the same age and a tragic statistic that carries across many minority groups). A laudable goal in and of itself, but even better is the creativity and strategy of her thinking. Ms. Battle ‘sees swimming as a disciplined sport, which has the potential to teach students skills that can carry over into the classroom’. That’s outstanding thinking outside the box! It reminded me of a movie I re-rented this week, ‘Take the Lead’ with Antonio Banderas, based on a true story about a ballroom dance instructor who believes that teaching at-risk students to dance will teach them self-respect and how to treat the opposite sex respectfully. There are so many amazing ways to get the right message across to kids, and so many of them come from people like Ms. Battle who care enough look at an old problem in a new way.


Does your community have any interesting out-of-the-box initiatives? I'd love to hear about them!

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