Students at two elementary schools in the Cariboo-Chilcotin region will be getting a new playground when they return to school in September.
Premier John Horgan announced Tuesday a new ongoing Playground Equipment Program that will provide up to $5 million each year to school districts to buy new or replacement playground equipment, and said that 51 schools this year will be receiving funding.
Caitlin Currie is the Principal at Alexis Creek Elementary/ Jr. Secondary that was approved $90,000 for a standard playground.
“We’re certainly excited about the opportunity for renewal,” says Currie.
“It is an older playground, but renewal was something we had on our to-do list in any event so we’re very excited. Funds are hard to come by, so it was a project that had been on our books.”
The current playground at the school according to a May 2, 2018 newsletter is over 20 years old and has experienced significant weathering.
In a release, Minister of Education Rob Fleming said that government has heard from parents that they need relief from fundraising tens of thousands of dollars for playground equipment.
“Today, we’re delivering this fund to help parents, and provide access to communities that don’t have the fundraising capacity to buy the play equipment students need,” he said.
Also receiving $90,000 for a standard playground is Voyageur Elementary in Quesnel.
“This new program will alleviate some of the inequities in parent fundraising, and enable PACs to strengthen their advisory and advocacy roles,” said Jen Mezei, president, B.C. Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils.
“Parents have advocated for this for over a decade, and we thank the government for the ongoing commitment. We believe that safe and accessible playgrounds should not be dependent on a school community’s ability to raise funds, and for too long have felt the burden to ensure schools and school communities have safe and engaging play spaces.”