More L.A. swimming pools open to public

LOS ANGELES The swimming pool at the Miguel Contreras Learning Complex was one of many pools that opened Monday.

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It's been closed for the past year after a shortage of lifeguards.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and the Los Angeles Unified School District signed an agreement ensuring that residents have access to 14 pools on school campuses.

"The district has pledged to do the physical heavy lifting to make these facilities open to the public. The city's committed to providing the programs so that these pools will operate with enough staff, with the lifeguards, the swimming lessons for everyone to be safe," Villaraigosa said.

The mayor said opening these pools to residents of underprivileged communities will allow children who otherwise wouldn't have a chance to learn how to swim to do just that.

"Unfortunately, many of our kids disproportionately, some 60 percent of Latino and African American kids, don't know how to swim," Villaraigosa said.

City and school officials said if they have anything to do about it, more pools on school campuses will open to the public.

"We are making a difference for young people when kids are healthy and happy, swimming and in the classroom. We're going to get to the 100 percent graduation," said LAUSD Board President Monica Garcia.

Superintendent David Brewer said the district will continue to make things like pools, Boys and Girls Clubs and YMCAs available to the public.

The existing swimming pools are located at:

  • Banning High School
  • Cleveland High School
  • Fremont High School
  • Panorama High School
  • Roosevelt High School
  • Santee Education Complex
  • Venice High School
  • West Adams Preparatory High School
  • Yosemite Recreation Center at Eagle Rock High Schooll
  • The agreement also covers five pools that will be built by 2012, at:

  • Central Los Angeles New Learning Center #1
  • Central Los Angeles High School #9
  • East Valley High School #1B
  • South Region High School #12
  • Helen Bernstein High School

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