Highland Swimmers Relieved After Pool Closure Comes To An End


Courtesy of Annie Murdock

Highland swimmers race in a home meet last season.

Peach Schilling, Editor-In-Chief

Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson recently banned high school swim teams from using county swimming pools. She said that she can not control what happens on school grounds, but can control what happens in county facilities, and believed it was the best decision considering COVID-19.

For Highland and many other schools across the state that do not have pools on their campuses, this was a concerning announcement as the start of the season is fast approaching. 

Senior and swim captain Quinn Keeney was worried when she heard the announcement because she knew there may be no other option if the facility they hold swim practices at didn’t allow them.

“Because Highland does not have its own pool, our team swims at Fairmont Aquatic Center, which is a Salt Lake County facility,” Keeney said. “Not being able to practice together put the team at a disadvantage compared to teams like Olympus, who were able to continue to practice because they have their own on-campus pool.”

There was a group of about 40 Salt Lake County students who gathered at the county office building last Friday in hopes that Wilson would repeal the ban. Highland students decided not to attend the protest due to COVID-19 concerns, but included multiple names on a letter that was sent to the Mayor’s office.

Following the protest and the many vocalized opinions of high school students with closed pools, Wilson changed her mind and decided to allow county pools to be open for team practices.

Keeney, along with the other captains and members of Highland’s swim team, are excited that they get the chance to compete this season.

“We were super relieved and excited to find out that the mayor decided to allow us to swim as a team,” Keeney said. “My hope for senior season as a captain is that we can create the family atmosphere swim has always had, while still keeping our team and others safe and healthy.”