Middle School

Middle School Swimming at The Ellis School

PPS Middle School boys 50-free finals, 2019

Goal for the near future, Swimming Reform in PPS

A call participants when out on January 24, 2018, to form a new program, an All-City Aquatics All-Star Team. Letters were handed out at the 2018 city championships, and the overall reaction was luke warm. Some interest was sparked. More participation and more sales effort would be needed to make the program flourish. 


Dear Swimmers, Guardians and Coaches:

Three cheers to you for completing the middle-school season and competing in today's championships. Hopefully, you choose to continue swimming, as we'd love to see you at 11:30 am on Saturday at PPS Oliver High School on the Northside.

You are invited to sign-up for a brand-new,All-City, Aquatics All-Star Team!

First meeting and swim clinic is this Saturday, January 27, 2018, from 11:30 to 1 pm on the Northside at PPS Oliver High School, 2323 Brighton Road, 15212.

Second meeting and clinic is next Saturday, February 3, 2018, from 11:30 to 1 pm at PPS Oliver. If interested, call, text or email.

Or, sign-up in advance.

We are seeking 25 or more middle-school athletes, boys and girls, of any swimming ability, for this low/no cost program. It is a labor of love from the coach(es). We hope to organize the swimmers, guardians and boosters for an All-Star experience with specialized practices, coaching, training, and lots of play and competitions. We'll swim, exercise, use technology tools. We'll also learn, practice and play water polo and SKWIM, a water-disk game. We stress sportsmanship, teamwork, and conditioning with help of digital badges. Playing well with others happens with in-house meets and game-days -- if we get your support and your participation.</p>
<p>Expect more information at the first clinics. Other practice opportunities in other city neighborhoods are possible too. Call with questions. 

Boost your fitness, swim knowledge, circle-of-friends, swim speed and aquatic game-play so that you can become a future lifeguard and a stronger varsity athlete, in any sport.

Thanks for the consideration.

Coach Mark Rauterkus

Suggested improvements from the past:‚Äč

Middle school swimming happens in Pittsburgh Public School throughout the winter. Nearly all the other schools in the WPIAL conduct the middle school swimming in the fall or spring seasons, and not the winter.

<img class="wp-image-1148 size-thumbnail" src="https://swim.cloh.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/PCA-from-upstairs-view-150x150.jpg" alt="" width="150" height="150" /> Photo from the pool balcony at PPS' PCA of middle school swimmers and coach.

Obama Academy, because it is a school with grades 6 to 12, has a crushing hardship for varsity swimming. Varsity swimmers do not get after-school practices because there are both middle-school PE classes as well as middle school swim practices. The varsity swimmers get in the pool at 6 am and have school dismissal at 2:50 pm and practice in the evenings from 5 to 7 pm. 

To learn more, see https://Dystopia.4Rs.org.

Middle School students at Obama could have fall water polo, winter JV swimming, and spring Middle School swimming with WPIAL competition. A single head coach directing three or more assistant coaches could unify and coordinate the programs with far greater participation and ultimate success.

Sci-Tech won the PPS MS Championships in 2012-13, but the team was called U-Prep. Go figure. 

Water polo could be a fall sport for both high school and middle school if there was a bit more political will to make it happen.

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  • Question: I received a flyer yesterday at the middle school swim championship about the all city, aquatics all star team. My son is very interested but I have a few questions…
    How often do they meet?
    Do we attend to both meetings/clinics (Jan 27 & feb 3)?
    How long is this program; does it end at the end of the school year, or is it only those two days?
    Hope to hear from you soon!
    (name nuked by webmaster)

    Thanks for the email.

    This is going to be very flexible. It is a start-up. I think we’ll meet every SATURDAY, except at spring break, and perhaps when there is weekend travel for me and the other volunteer swim coaches can’t cover. Weddings, conferences, stuff like that. It will always be published on a google calendar and calling or email before is okay too. I hate wasted trips.

    So, there will be no MANDATORY things.

    I want to see who is interested and in what part of the city they are from. For example, if there are 10 from PCA or 10 from Greenfield — I’ll go out of our way to try to get the pool there once a week too. But, I expect to have a practice at Westinghouse once a week, another too, I hope at Obama. Perhaps one at Sci-Tech or one at Arsenal.

    NO “have to.” But, we’ll have practices / swim opportunities and meetings both Saturdays as advertised. I wanted to see who’s got interest in the next two weeks on Saturdays.

    The program will go to first week of June. I hope kids can make 1 or more practice a week.

    In JUNE, the summer pools will open. I hope to coach throughout the summer at Northside’s The Pittsburgh Project. Plus, we’ll have some Triathlon opportunities and open-water swimming as well, each week, at Moraine State Park. So, in the summer, we’ll have other options as well as other swim teams that come with Citiparks, etc.

    Hope to you you and the kid(s) on a Saturday in the near future.

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