As of this writing, the Muscogee County School Board was scheduled to discuss a proposed pilot program of swimming lessons for kindergarteners at Tuesday afternoon's work session. Formal vote on the proposal would be at the next regular monthly meeting on July 20.
Here's hoping Tuesday's discussion of Superintendent David Lewis' recommendation turns out to have been short and affirmative, because from here it looks like a no-brainer.
It's summer, it's hot, and people are flocking to the water. Many of those people are children, too many of those children can't swim, and too often the consequences are tragic.
And now, for some at least, largely preventable.
The proposed pilot program involves an agreement between the Muscogee County School District and the Columbus Parks and Recreation Department to provide the lessons for kindergarteners from three schools, Rigdon Road Elementary, St. Marys Road Magnet and Wynnton Arts. Lewis said those schools represent each of the district's three regions and all are relatively close to the Columbus Aquatic Center, where the lessons will be provided.
The price of this program could hardly be a better deal: Parks and Rec Director James Worsley said a local company, whose leadership prefers it to remain unidentified, is picking up the whole tab for the 2015-16 school year in the form of a grant. That will cover lessons for an average of 100 kids from each of the three schools.
Participation will require the signed consent of parents or guardians, who will be allowed to watch the instruction -- 10 half-hour lessons over two weeks -- and transportation for the children to and from the swim center is included in the program.
We know from statistics, anecdotal evidence and common sense that small children who learn to swim are dramatically less likely to drown --88 percent less likely for children 1-4 who get formal lessons, according to the USA Swimming Foundation.
Some local children might now have free access to those literally life-saving skills, thanks to a generous private donor's investment. This is an easy call.
It was over fast, and it wasn't close.
The Americans scored early and often, to pound defending champion Japan 5-2 and bring the Women's World Cup soccer championship home from Vancouver.
The easy win -- or so it might seem if you don't think about the grueling hours of training and practice that produced it -- brought the United States its first women's soccer championship since 1999 and its third overall.
The American women made it 4-0 and lights out in less than 16 minutes. Think soccer's too slow? Block this.