Regarding the Oct. 16 story, "Atlantic City board to create own swim program/BOE refuses to negotiate fee with existing swim club":

Atlantic City Board or Education, please stop playing politics and think about children. The Atlantic City Aquatic Club is the most successful athletic program in the city, by far. The combination of kids from Atlantic City and the surrounding towns has been a recipe for success for years.

This program is providing kids with a positive activity and reinforcing the value of hard work. Its unmatched work ethic carries over into the classroom and into the participants' adult lives.

Now the school board believes it can put together a program that will be equally as impressive. I ask the school board to show me an athletic program it runs that boasts the same results.

Why is the board killing a program that is the most successful in the city and costs taxpayers nothing, to start one that will be funded by tax dollars? There is more that goes into a successful swim program than meets the eye. Will the new program join USA Swimming? Where will the team compete? Who will coach this program? What do they know about competitive swimming?

As families look around for a new swim program, undoubtedly some will venture to Ocean City and its swim program. Don't be shocked when these same families decide that keeping their children in Ocean City for high school makes sense. This decision goes much deeper than a swim program. It will also have effects on Atlantic City schools. I hope the board understands the full impact of the choice it is making.

ANDREW KINGSLEY

Margate