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I’ve been leaked a new “FAQ for Board Members and Others” that is being selectively circulated by USA Swimming. You can read it at http://muchnick.net/usasmemo.pdf.

There’s plenty of mirthful, if dark, material here, such as the assurance, “The state of USA Swimming is excellent and supported by important metrics.” There are also some newsworthy nuggets; I’ll be commenting in installments.

For the moment, let’s pull out my personal favorite item, No. 12: “Why does coaches’ education certification channel through ASCA [American Swimming Coaches Association]?”:

“USA Swimming has established certain requirements for coach members. These requirements include maintaining current safety certifications, passing regular background checks and Safe Sport training, and meeting a minimum education requirement. The required “Foundations of Coaching” basic education course has been jointly developed by USA Swimming and ASCA.  Similarly, we have partnered with outside experts like the American Red Cross and Praesidium to deliver appropriate safety certification and athlete protection programs.  ASCA provides numerous coach education opportunities and a voluntary coach’s certification program which compliment USA Swimming resources. We encourage coaches to take advantage of multiple educational avenues.”

But I’m confused! ASCA executive director John Leonard told me that ASCA is not “an organization that deals directly with children, nor is that part of our purpose in any way, shape or form.”

Irv Muchnick

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