From student to swimmer: Looking back at Michael Phelps’ Olympic path


Before Michael Phelps became the most decorated Olympian in history, earning 28 medals in all, he was a Baltimore County Public Schools student.

Growing up in Towson, Phelps attended Rodgers Forge Elementary School. As an elementary school student, he was involved in several club sports, including baseball, cross country, and soccer. At Dumbarton Middle School years later, he became interested in music and played in the school band. In 1999, he entered Towson High School, where he divided his time between studying and competing for the North Baltimore Aquatic Club.

“As I traveled the country for Michael’s competitions, I was often asked whether he attended public or private schools,” said Deborah Phelps, Michael’s mother and director of The Education Foundation of Baltimore County Public Schools. “I was always proud to say he attended BCPS schools because I knew he was getting a quality education that was preparing him to be just as successful in life as he was in the pool.”

But just how successful has Michael Phelps been? Setting national age group records since he was 10 years old, Phelps qualified for the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia. At the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece, he won eight medals and then earned another eight at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China. At the Olympics in London, England, four years later, he added six more medals to his collection, bringing his total to 22.

Now, at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, Brazil, he’s brought his total to 28 medals, including 23 gold, three silver, and two bronze.

For his dedication, hard work, and success over the years, Team BCPS congratulates graduate and Olympic champion Michael Phelps!

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