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School Year Program (SYP) 2022

Sail Opti, Laser & HS420/C420. Contact us for more information

Shool Year Program FAQ'S

Who is eligible to participate?

Students ages 8 and above who can demonstrate their ability to swim, hear and carry-out basic instructions over a short distance, and be physically able to handle his/her own equipment (which includes being able to recover his/her capsized sailboat independently), and who have completed at least one session of basic sailing with ESC or with another sailing center are eligible to participate in the SYP.

What is the School Year Program?

The School Year Program incorporates both recreational sailing and competitive sailing with an emphasis on the enjoyment of sailing as a lifelong activity. The School Year Program incorporates a calendar similar to the schools, roughly 32 weeks. Instructor(s) teach sailing skills that include embedded academic skills (broad categories of mathematics and science). Students may be afforded opportunities in keelboat sailing, crewing on larger sailboats, and local regattas as their skills develop. Throughout the year, students will demonstrate the proper way to rig/unrig a sailboat, understand and use basic terminology correctly, apply knowledge of weather (wind and current) to sail away from – and back to – the beach, and apply principles of navigation to sail to a specific destination and back. Sailing’s unique platform provides opportunities for both increased independence as well as collaboration.

What about High School Sailing?

The sailing center participates in the ISA (Interscholastic Sailing Association) as part of the South Atlantic District (SAISA). We are not part of the Florida High School Athletic Association. Please visit for complete information. ESC is working with other sailing centers who support one or more high school teams at their locations to consider possible sailing opportunities. Fort Myers High School has an active sailing club & team. Any high school may participate with a minimum of four sailors. For more information, contact the sailing center.

What are the Costs?

ESC is a 501 (c) 3 corporation, not for profit, and relies on memberships, instruction fees, donations, volunteers, and community support to sustain operation. Fees  include use of the boat and equipment and access to certified instructors. Students who wish to enter competitive sailing (racing) can anticipate additional costs for regatta fees, hotel & transportation costs, etc. Single child semester fee is $325; siblings are $200 per semester. Memberships are paid by September 1 & January 1 of each semester using our electronic system (Regatta Network)..

When and Where is Practice?

Practice days are scheduled on Mondays and Wednesdays for specific fleets (Green Fleet Optis, Lasers, 420s). Weekday practices are held after school, usually starting around 3:30, or earlier for high school students (2:00). We also hold “open practice” every Saturday. We encourage the more inexperienced sailors to come (Saturday) mornings (until Noon).

What is Expected of the Parents and Sailors?

Both Parents and Sailors play a vital role in a community-based sailing center. It is virtually impossible to have a successful program without the input & support of families.  Parents are expected to sign-up for scheduled work days, and contribute time, talent & resources to specific activities scheduled during the year. Likewise, our sailors “pay it forward” through assisting in outreach boating programs for the community, work days, and summer programs, to name a few. As a non-profit group, we rely on volunteers. Without parent help the program cannot continue.

What about competitive sailing?

Much of what we teach and support at ESC focuses on developing skills for lifelong  enjoyment of sailing – recreationally. For those who would like to race, ESC can suggest specific regattas that are developmentally appropriate for each sailor’s skill level. Travel, regatta fees, and associated costs are over & above membership fees. ESC hosts a US Junior Olympic Regatta every October – The River Romp. Competitive sailing (racing) is parent-driven and managed.

Can parents learn how to sail or operate a powerboat?

Edison Sailing Center is first and foremost a youth training facility. Adult sailing instruction may be arranged by contacting the sailing center. ESC is also a US Powerboat Training Center and offers a national certification 16-hour program (recommended for adults and students who are 15 years of age). Anyone born after January 1, 1988, is required to have a state boating license or national certification to operate a powerboat. We do teach youth ages 10-13 how to powerboat safely using Florida’s Bobber Card powerboat program. Children 15 and older should take the US Powerboating course.

Can I/We Rent Sailboats?

The sailing center will offer Family Days during which ESC families may sail our Hobies & other smaller boats, or kayak, at no extra cost, but ESC does not rent boats.

How is Edison governed?

ESC is a non-profit corporation, overseen by an elected Board of Directors, along with Ad Hoc Committees, Friends of ESC, & the Coaches. Parents may serve on the Board and are encouraged to do so. ESC was incorporated in 1983 and has been serving the youth of Lee County for more than 30 years. Three generations of sailors have come through the sailing center!