Last day of school causing pool staffing headaches for Shawnee County Parks and Rec

Local News

TOPEKA (KSNT) – Shawnee County Parks and Recreation is planning on opening pools and aquatic centers Memorial Day weekend, but the county is having a hard time filling seasonal positions. Many lifeguards are usually area teens, which will be in school later this year due to the pandemic.

Students at Auburn-Washburn and Seaman will have their last day on May 26. Shawnee Heights gets out on May 28 and Topeka Public Schools will be dismissed on June 4.

Communications and Public Information Supervisor Mike McLaughlin said they are planning on relying on college students in the short term.

“They will be out of school and be available, so that will help us get open early but it is a question,” McLaughlin said. “Sometimes we’ll have to rotate staff around. If it really came down to it we might have to rotate some hours at different pools, but our hope is that we’ll get enough students to apply.”

McLaughlin said he believes that students are not applying yet, but they’ll be in school a week or two later than normally.

Shawnee County normally hires around 600 seasonal workers each year and a good chunk of them are in pools and aquatic centers. Click here to look at job listings.

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