Langley MLA Mary Polak joined Simonds Elementary principal Tanya Rogers to announce $50,000 to replace a playground at the Langley City school.
The funds will replace the aging wood structure that is currently there.
It is only recently that the provincial government started funding the replacement of old playground equipment. Prior to this year, it was up to Parent Advisory Councils to fundraise to buy new playgrounds.
Last Friday (June 13), R.C. Garnett Elementary held a ceremony for the new $13,000 playground their PAC paid for, with help from the Township. Parents there put in the playground themselves to save the $4,000 it would cost to have it professionally installed.
The reason R.C. Garnett didn’t receive any provincial funding was because the school is new and it wasn’t replacing aging equipment, it was putting in new equipment, according to the Ministry of Education. Simonds PAC president Dennis Goldstone was on hand for the announcement and was thrilled that the kids will have “safe” play equipment.
“This equipment is very important because the kids spend a lot of time out here,” he said.
Goldstone said that his PAC had already raised a fair amount of funds to replace the playground.
Now it can use those funds to improve the “swamp” the kids love to play in.
“They spend 90 per cent of their time running around in the swamp,” Goldstone said. “Now we can put in some new bridges over the stream and make some site improvements to make it less muddy and even bring back an amphitheater, so teachers can have class outside.”
This is the final phase of an $8 million playground commitment with 227 funded across the province.
Parkside, Willoughby Elementary and Uplands were given similar funding already.