Phoenix pools are opening soon and registration has begun for affordable swim lessons for all ages.

Registration for the 2014 swim classes opened on Thursday, May 1. Swim lessons cost $15. The complete schedule of classes is viewable online at phoenix.gov/parks/pools.

This year, for the first time, the city is offering semi-private swimming lessons on the weekends. During those sessions there will be a low student-to-teacher ratio of three-to-one.

The semi-private lessons were piloted last year at Mountain View Pool and proved to be a successful model.

“The weekend hours give parents another scheduling option, they open up more instructional time for staff who may have maxed out available pool hours during the week, the small teacher-to-student ratio in semi-private classes helps kids who are especially fearful or reluctant to enter the water and need that closer supervision,” said David Urbinato, spokesman for the Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department. “Fear aside, some kids might just benefit from the closer supervision of semi-private, which could help keep them focused. So parents have an option based on their understanding of their own children and the type of class from which they’d most benefit.”

The pilot program in 2013 was filled to 89 percent capacity. The semi-private lessons are being offered at four city pools with the largest entry-level swim lesson waiting lists.

City pools will open on Memorial Day weekend, May 24 to May 26, from 1 to 7 p.m., and then will reopen for the summer on May 31. The season goes through July 27, but Pecos pool will remain open weekends in August through Labor Day.

For more information, visit phoenix.gov/parks/pools. Information also is available by phone, at (602) 534-6587, or by sending an email to aquatics.pks@phoenix.gov.

The Phoenix City Manager’s trial budget for 2014-15 contains proposed reductions in the city’s swim and dive teams. The budget does not contain any reduction to swimming lessons.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7914 or ahurtado@ahwatukee.com.

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