WTSC Safe Sport

Code of Conduct

As required by USA Swimming, the WTSC Board of Directors has adopted a Code of Conduct for swimmers. Updated in August 2015, all swimmers and parents will be asked to sign the code as part of the registration packet.This document, along with USA Swimming's Code of Conduct, include guidelines to insure appropriate behavior as an athlete, parent, or staff member when representing the club. We ask that you take a few minutes to read the documents.

WTSC Full Code of Conduct & Best Practices

WTSC Safe Sport Reporting Contact***- wtscsafesport@gmail.com

***Please note this email address should be used for reporting inappropriate action by anyone associated with WTSC. This email is not to be used for any other purpose, including issues related to your swimmers performance or general questions/comments about the team. For these issues, we ask that you start first with your training group coach.

Alternatively, there are three other resources for reporting or dealing with inappropriate conduct should you chose not to use WTSC's services:

  • A 24/7 hotline. The SafeSport Helpline provides crisis intervention, referrals, and emotional support specifically designed for athletes, staff, and other SafeSport participants affected by sexual violence. Through this service, support specialists provide live, confidential, one-on-one support. All services are anonymous, secure, and available 24/7.

  • USA Swimming Safe Sport Coordinator:  Liz Heondervoogt ehoendervoogt@usaswimming.org

  • Indiana Swimming Safe Sport Coordinator:  Paul Stauder paul.stauder@me.com

 


 

WTSC Code of Conduct for Swimmers

 

All swimmers are apprised in writing of this WTSC Swimmer Code of Conduct, as well as the attached WTSC Safe Sport Policy and USA Swimming Code of Conduct. A signature on this document constitutes unconditional agreement by the swimmer to comply with the stipulations of all documents.

 

  • WTSC swimmers will display proper respect and sportsmanship toward coaches, officials, administrators, teammates, fellow competitors and the public at all times.
  • WTSC swimmers will refrain from any illegal or inappropriate behavior that would detract from a positive image of the team or be detrimental to its performance objectives.
  • The possession or use of alcohol or tobacco products by any athlete is prohibited.
  • Bullying is prohibited.
  • The possession, use, or sale/distribution of any controlled or illegal substance or any form of weapon or fireworks is prohibited.
  • Swimmers are reminded that when competing in meets, traveling on trips, and attending other meet-related functions, they are representing themselves as well as WTSC. Athlete behavior must positively reflect the high standards of the club.
  • Swimmers are to refrain from inappropriate physical contact at team activities and events.
  • Swimmers are to refrain from use of inappropriate language.
  • Swimmers must respect the privacy of each other.
  • Swimmers shall abide by the following applicable policies, copies of which are included in registration materials:
  • WTSC Safe Sport Policy
  • WTSC Electronic Communications Policy
  • WTSC Drop-off/Pick-up Policy
  • USA Swimming Code of Conduct
  • The coaching staff and/or Board of Directors holds the final word on any rules, regulations or disciplinary action. 

 

Failure to comply with the WTSC Swimmer Code of Conduct as set forth in this document may result in disciplinary action. Such discipline may include, but may not be limited to:

 

1st offense: Verbal warning and athlete meeting with group head coach

2nd offense: Written warning, parent and athlete meeting with WTSC Head Coach

3rd offense: Written warning, parent and athlete meeting with WTSC Head Coach, WTSC Board President, and 3 day suspension

4th offense: Dismissal from the team

 

I recognize that my membership on Team WTSC is an honor and privilege. I will abide by the above WTSC Swimmer Code of Conduct. I acknowledge that I have received and read these documents and will abide by them.

 

_______________________________                                                                                                                                            

ATHLETE PRINTED NAME                                                                                         ATHLETE SIGNATURE                                                                                                  DATE

 

______________________________                                                                                                                                               

PARENT/GUARDIAN PRINTED NAME                                                                PARENT/GUARDIAN SIGNATURE                                                                         DATE

 

______________________________                                                                                                                                               

PARENT/GUARDIAN PRINTED NAME                                                                PARENT/GUARDIAN SIGNATURE                                                                         DATE

WTSC Code of Conduct for Parents

 

Parents of swimmers on the Washington Township Swim Club (“WTSC”) are required to read and agree to abide by the following Code of Conduct, in addition to the WTSC Safe Sport Policy and USA Swimming Code of Conduct.  This applies for the short and long course seasons.

 

  • Parents will cooperate with coaches, team members, opponents and officials at all times.
  • Swimmers are in the care of WTSC staff and coaches during all practices and meets.
  • Parents should leave coaching to the coaches.
  • Parents will refrain from approaching coaches on deck during practice hours and respect their need to focus on training the swimmers. However, parents can expect coaches to respond to an email in a timely manner within 24-48 hours except perhaps on meet weekends.
  • Parents will not text, email, or phone coaches during a swim meet unless it is to inform them of tardiness or scratches.
  • Parents will not engage in any negative discussions in the pool facility during practice or meets that is detrimental to the swim team.
  • Parents and family members must remain on the bleachers or outside the facility during practices.
  • Photography/filming by any parent without prior coach approval will not be allowed during practice times in order to comply with the WTSC Safe Sport Policy.
  • It is the responsibility of the parent to have their swimmer at the practice/meet facility 15 minutes prior to the start/warm-up so their child is prepared to get in the water on time.
  • WTSC Parents will provide positive support, generally in terms of cheering, and clapping for all swimmers, both WTSC and its opponents.
  • If you have a problem with any coach or official within the WTSC, bring it to the attention of your child’s coach.  If that is unsatisfactory then bring it to the attention of the Head Age Group Coach or the Head Coach.  If you deem the response to be unsatisfactory, then write a formal complaint to the WTSC board of directors.  All such issues must be documented, signed and dated.
  • Any objections to officials or coaches decisions should be reserved until after the conclusion of the meet session.  At such time, the issue should be discussed with the coach in a professional manner.
  • WTSC parents teach and encourage their children to exhibit good sportsmanship and exhibit good sportsmanship themselves.
  • Consumption of alcohol, tobacco products or illegal drugs at the facility of any WTSC event which you are attending is prohibited.
  • WTSC parents will not tolerate any sexual or racial harassment or intolerance.
  • WTSC parents encourage an atmosphere of openness, cooperation and consultation.
  • WTSC parents encourage loyalty within the team and the Club.

 

Any violation of this code by a parent will be brought to the attention of the Board of Directors, which will issue the appropriate response.  This response could include one or more of the following:

  1. Verbal warning by Head Coach
  2. Formal Letter of Complaint
  3. Temporary Parental Practice and/or Meet Suspension (two weeks from practice and one meet) and a formal meeting with a Board representative
  4. Permanent Suspension (of family, including swimmer, from the club)

 

By registering a swimmer(s), parents agree unconditionally to abide by this WTSC Parent Code of Conduct, as well as the WTSC Safe Sport Policy and USA Swimming Code of Conduct, which are included in the registration materials.

 

WTSC Code of Conduct for Coaches

The purpose of this code of conduct for coaches is to establish common expectations for all members of the coaching staff of the club.  It is to be used as a guide to promote a positive team environment and good sportsmanship.

  • At all times, adhere to WTSC’s Safe Sport Policy, WTSC’s Electronic Communications Policy, and USA Swimming’s rules and Code of Conduct.
  • Set a good example of respect and sportsmanship for participants and fans to follow.
  • Act and dress with professionalism and dignity in a manner suitable to his/her profession.
  • Respect officials and their judgment and abide by the rules of the event.
  • Treat opposing coaches, participants, and spectators with respect.
  • Instruct participants in sportsmanship and demand that they display good sportsmanship.
  • Coach in a positive manner and do not use derogatory comments or abusive language.
  • Win with humility and lose with dignity.
  • Treat every athlete fairly, justly, impartially, intelligently, and with sensitivity.
  • Always place the well-being, health, and safety of swimmers above all other considerations, including developing performance.
  • Continue to seek and maintain their own professional development in all areas in relation to coaching and teaching children.
  • Always maintain a professional separation between coach and athlete.
  • Maintain open lines of communication with parents regarding team issues and respond to parent calls/emails in a timely manner.

 

Any complaints of a coach violating the WTSC Coaches Code of Conduct will be brought to the attention of his/her supervisor and/or the club’s Board of Directors. This Code of Conduct is agreed upon by a coach upon accepting employment by WTSC. 

 

 

 

 

 

WTSC Safe Sport Policy

 

  1. All swimming practices are open to observation by parents.
  2. An open and observable environmental will be maintained for all interactions between adults and athletes. Private or one-on-one situations will be avoided unless they are open and observable. To this end, all coach meetings with an individual athlete will also be attended by another coach of the same gender as the swimmer or a parent/guardian of the swimmer and such meetings will be held on the pool deck, a coach’s office or wet classroom. 
  3. In accordance with USA Swimming Best Practice Guidelines, WTSC will effort to have at least one other adult present with a coach at all practices and other sanctioned club activities whenever at least one athlete is present.
  4. Coaches will not invite or have an athlete(s) to their home without the permission of the athletes’

parents (or legal guardian). In the event of this situation occurring, another adult will also be present.

  1. During team travel, when doing room checks, attending team meetings, and/or other activities, two adults will be present and open and observable environments will be maintained.
  2. Athletes are not allowed to ride in a coach’s vehicle without another adult present, unless prior parental permission is obtained, and only as a last resort.
  3. During overnight team travel, when athletes are paired with other athletes, they will be of the same

gender and will be a similar age. Chaperones and/or team administration will stay in rooms on the same floor.

  1. In the case that only one coach is traveling to a competition, at the competition the coach and athlete(s) will establish a “buddy” club to associate with during the competition and when away from the venue if there are no team parents accompanying the swimmer(s).
  2. Communications between non-athlete adult members and athletes cannot include any topic or language that is sexual or inappropriate in nature.
  3.  Non-athlete adult members will respect the privacy of athletes in situations such as changing of

clothes, showering, etc. Non-athlete adult members should protect their own privacy in similar situations.

  1. Relationships of a peer-to-peer nature with any athletes are not tolerated. For example, coaches are

not to discuss their own personal problems with athletes.

  1. Coaches and other non-athlete adult members are not allowed to be involved with horseplay and

roughhousing with athletes.

  1. When a coach touches an athlete as part of instruction, the coach will do so in direct view of others

and inform the athlete of what he/she is doing prior to the initial contact. Touching athletes will be minimized outside the boundaries of what is considered normal instruction. Appropriate interaction includes high fives, fist bumps, handshakes, and consenting hugs (i.e. after an extraordinary race).

  1. Coaches will not initiate contact with or accept supervisory responsibility for athletes outside club programs and activities.  Parents will not ask coaches to remain at practice or a meet to watch their child if they are running late for pick up.
  2. Coaches will not engage in sexual intimacies with a former athlete for at least two years after the

cessation or termination of professional services. Because sexual intimacies with a former athlete are frequently harmful to the athlete, and because such intimacies undermine public confidence in the coaching profession and thereby deter the public’s use of needed services, coaches should not engage in sexual intimacies with former athletes even after a two-year interval except in the most unusual circumstances. The coach who engages in such activity after the two years following cessation or termination of the coach-athlete relationship bears the burden of demonstrating that there has been no exploitation, in light of all relevant factors, including:

1. The amount of time that has passed since the coach-athlete relationship terminated;

2. The circumstances of termination;

3. The athlete’s personal history;

4. The athlete’s current mental status;

5. The likelihood of adverse impact on the athlete and others; and

6. Any statements or actions made by the coach during the course of the athlete-coach

relationship suggesting or inviting the possibility of a post-termination sexual or romantic

relationship with the athlete or coach.

7. Both the athlete and the coach must be 18 years of age or older.

 

The WTSC Board has final say on all of the aforementioned guidelines. Those who violate any number of these will be subject to a Board hearing, wherein the possibility of removal from the team may occur.  These guidelines are agreed upon, by all non-athletes and athletes involved, when registering to become a member of Washington Township Swim Club or upon being hired as a WTSC coach.

 

 

 

 

WTSC Practice Drop-off/Pick-up Policy

 

The following guidelines apply to pick-up and drop-off for WTSC practices.  Please cover these expectations with your swimmer(s) to ensure these guidelines are followed. Coaches and Board members shall have the authority to administer this policy which is designed to maintain a safe environment for athletes, coaches and spectators.  In no particular order:  

  1. It is the responsibility of the parent to have their swimmer at the practice/meet facility 15 minutes prior to the start/warm-up so their child is prepared to get in the water on time.
  2. Senior swimmers will have 30 minutes once exiting the pool to be showered, packed up and picked upWith the exception of 4) below, AT NO TIME is a Senior swimmer to be unsupervised in the pool facility after 30 minutes following the conclusion of high school practice.
  3. When a Senior swimmer is done getting dressed after high school practice, s/he may exit to the back hall/west side of the building to wait to be picked up or s/he may walk on deck by the spectator stands on the way to the back hall to see if a parent or guardian is waiting for them inside already.  REMAINING ON DECK, IN ANY ON DECK OFFICE SPACE, or in the WET CLASSROOM is strictly prohibited.
  4. If a Senior swimmer has a sibling attending WTSC practice, the Senior swimmer is permitted to wait off the pool deck in the spectator stands while their sibling completes practice.  This will be strictly enforced by coaches, Board members, and/or any WTSC parent.
  5. If there is an extenuating circumstance (e.g., parent meeting with a coach, WTSC Board meeting, parent has contacted coach with an emergency), a swimmer may wait and be picked up from the spectator stands where adults/families also wait for practices/swim lessons to finish.
  6. PARENTS ARE EXPECTED TO PICK UP CLUB AND LESSON SWIMMERS WITHIN 15 MINUTES OF THE COMPLETION OF THEIR CHILD’s SESSION, even if an older sibling will be in the pool for an additional period of time due to the length of their practice.  For example, if you have a White Cap and a Crest swimmer, you will need to be at the pool by 7:15 to pick up your White Cap even though your Crest swimmer will not be out of the pool until 7:30. 
  7. When a club swimmer is done getting dressed after practice, s/he may exit to the back hall/west side of the building to wait to be picked up or s/he may walk on deck by the spectator stands on the way to the back hall to see if a parent or guardian is waiting for them inside already.
  8. Swimmers are NOT permitted to wait/play in the main hall inside Door #24 or in the hallways leading to the gymnasiums.

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of clearly communicating on a day to day basis your family’s plan for pick up so that your child understands the expectation as to where they should and are permitted to be after practice.  We need your support in complying with and emphasizing these rules, which are necessary to protect our swimmers and comply with the WTSC Safe Sport Policy and USA Swimming insurance requirements. 

By registering a swimmer(s), parents agree unconditionally to abide by this WTSC Practice Drop-off/Pick-up Policy.

 

 

 

WTSC Electronic Communications Policy

WTSC recognizes the prevalence of electronic communication and social media in today’s world. Many of our swimmers use these means as their primary method of communication. While WTSC acknowledges the value of these methods of communication, we also realize that there are associated risks that must be considered when adults use these methods to communicate with minors.

 

WTSC General Expectations:

  • Athletes will not use derogatory language, including sexist, racist, homophobic, obscene, or profane material of any kind.
  • Athletes will not use social media to degrade, demean, or attack any person, team, or organization.
  • Athletes will not use social media to contact his/her coach(es) and will instead post appropriate material to the club’s profile.
  • Athletes will not call or text their coach, except in an emergency or if a parent/guardian is included in the communication.
  • All communication between athletes and coaches will be related to the activities of the team and should, whenever possible, be limited to in-person communication during team practices or events.

 

GENERAL CONTENT

All communications between a coach (or other adult) and an athlete must be professional in nature and

for the purpose of communicating information about team activities. The content and intent of all

electronic communications must adhere to the USA Swimming Code of Conduct regarding Athlete

Protection and WTSC Safe Sport Policy.

 

For example, as with any communication with an athlete, electronic communication should not contain or relate to any of the following:

  • drugs or alcohol use;
  • sexually oriented conversation; sexually explicit language; sexual activity
  • the adult’s personal life , social activities, relationship or family issues, or personal problems; and
  • inappropriate or sexually explicit pictures

Note: Any communication concerning an athlete's personal life, social activities, relationship or

family issues or personal problems must be transparent, accessible and professional.

 

Whether one is an athlete, coach, board member or parent, the guiding principle to always use in

communication is to ask: “Is this communication something that someone else would find appropriate or

acceptable in a face-to-face meeting?” or “Is this something you would be comfortable saying out loud to

the intended recipient of your communication in front of the intended recipient’s parents, the coaching

staff, the board, or other athletes?”

 

With respect to electronic communications, a simple test that can be used in most cases is whether the

electronic communication with swimmers is Transparent, Accessible and Professional.

 

Transparent: All electronic communication between coaches and athletes should be transparent. Your

communication should not only be clear and direct, but also free of hidden meanings, innuendo and

expectations.

 

Accessible: All electronic communication between coaches and athletes should be considered a matter of

record and part of the club’s records. Whenever possible, include another coach or parent in the

communication so that there is no question regarding accessibility.

Professional: All electronic communication between a coach and an athlete should be conducted

professionally as a representative of the program. This includes word choices, tone, grammar, and subject

matter that model the standards and integrity of a staff member.

If your communication meets all three of the T.A.P. criteria, then it is likely your method of

communication with athletes will be appropriate.

 

INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, SNAPCHAT, & SIMILAR SITES

Coaches may have individual social media pages, but they are not permitted to have any athlete member

of WTSC join their personal page as a “friend,” even if it is a professional account. A coach should not

accept any “friend” request from an athlete. In addition, the coach should remind the athlete that this is

not permitted. Coaches and athletes cannot “private message” each other through Facebook and are not

permitted to “instant message” each other through Facebook chat or other IM method.

 

WTSC has an official Facebook page that athletes and their parents can “friend” for information and

updates on team-related matters. The team Facebook page is intended for professional use only.

Posts only contain content approved by those involved. Each athlete/parent in the program will have the option to read, understand, and sign a WTSC Photo/Video Release Form as a part of registering before the team would reveal any images or footage. If at any point the athlete or their parent is uncomfortable with the content being displayed, the coaching staff will immediately and without question remove the post related to the issue. Swimmers and parents do not have to agree to the release form. In that instance, the WTSC Business Manager will hold a copy of the form on file that states they do not wish to participate.

 

Coaches are encouraged to set their Facebook pages to “private” to prevent athletes from accessing the coach’s personal information, unless the coach’s page is intended for professional purposes (meaning, not for personal connections). It is at the coach’s discretion whether or not he/she allows swimmers to “friend” them after they have graduated high school and moved on. Even then, it can only be after the swimmer has completely departed from the WTSC program and is at least 18 years of age.

 

TWITTER:

Coaches and athletes may follow each other on Twitter, as long as the contact is professional. Coaches cannot “favorite” or “retweet” an athlete’s post unless it pertains to the program and is not inappropriate or condescending in any context. Coaches and athletes are not permitted to “direct message” each other through Twitter.

 

A reminder to swimmers: be mindful of what you are posting, the language you use, and how others

may perceive it. If you plan on going to college (and continue swimming or not), this is a popular outlet

for admissions offices to decide whether or not they accept a student to their school. Every picture, link, quote, tweet, status, or post that you or your friends put online is forever part of your digital footprint.

 

TEXTING

Subject to the general guidelines mentioned above, texting is allowed between coaches and athletes during the hours from 8am until 8pm. There are only 2 exceptions in relation to appropriate times during the day. The first is allowing swimmers and coaches who have 5am-7am practices, to text during those times only in the event of an emergency situation (i.e. a swimmer’s car breaks down on the way to practice). The second is for those swimmers whose practice goes until 8:30pm. They may text their group coach up until 9pm, but only in the event of an emergency situation. All texting shall only be used for the purpose of communicating information directly related to team activities.

 

EMAIL

Athletes and coaches may use email to communicate between the hours of 6am and 10pm. When

communicating with an athlete through email, a parent, another coach, or a board member must also be

copied.

REQUEST TO DISCONTINUE ALL ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATIONS

The parents or guardians of an athlete may request, in writing and directed to the President of the WTSC Board, that their child not be contacted by coaches through any form of electronic communication.

 

 

 
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