News

Maple Ridge schools get playground funding

Kindergarten student Lauren Curtis, with the help of her older brother Alex, has raised close to $1,000 for a new playground at Eric Langton elementary. - Colleen Flanagan/The News
Kindergarten student Lauren Curtis, with the help of her older brother Alex, has raised close to $1,000 for a new playground at Eric Langton elementary.
— image credit: Colleen Flanagan/The News

Parents and students at Eric Langton elementary School got some unexpected good news Thursday, as the provincial government announced funding to help upgrade playgrounds at 80 elementary school across the province.

The downtown Maple Ridge school was awarded $50,000 towards a new playground, while Albion elementary was given $25,000 for upgrades to its playground.

Earlier this year, the playground used by Eric Langton’s primary students had to be boarded up after it was repeatedly vandalized.

“It’s been tough to see it disintegrate like it has this year,” said Eric Langton principal Jon Wheatley.

The school’s Parent Advisory Council began fundraising efforts in March. While it was originally expected to take years to raise the more than $100,000 needed to replace the playground, thanks to support from the community and the province’s funding contribution, Wheatley expects the new playground to be installed by early this fall.

“It’s all happened so quickly,” he said. “You we were going on the premise we were going to have to raise all the money our selves, so this is huge.”

The school’s PAC has already managed to raise $28,000, and the community has been quick to support the school’s efforts. The Meadowridge Rotary Club has promised to match funds raised by the school up to $35,000, and the Royal Canadian Legion’s local women’s auxiliary donated have donated $1,000 to the cause.

The new playground will be accessible for those in wheelchairs, and will be geared towards the school’s younger students.

“It will be a very interactive playground, and the only fully accessible playground in downtown Maple Ridge,” said Wheatley. “It’s a win for the school and for the community, because this is very much a community park after school hours.”

The province’s $3.3 million funding announcement was the final phase of an $8-million commitment made by the provincial government last September.

“Playground activity improves the health and learning capacity of young students in B.C.,” said Kathy Cassels, executive director of The Directorate of Agencies for School Health B.C. “By repairing, improving, and, where necessary replacing playgrounds, the B.C. government is promoting, supporting and facilitating a healthy schools approach for young learners.”

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Q&A: Ex-transportation ministers criticize referendum, discuss TransLink
 
Ridge economic development manager now on Abby council
 
BC Ferries to cut routes and senior discount, test slot machines between Island-Lower Mainland
Operation Red Nose ready to hit the road for another season
 
[UPDATE] High-risk missing woman found
 
Business idea starting to catch fire
Chilliwack and beyond challenged to share their next meal
 
Chilliwack hillsides plan takes servicing into account
 
Man charged in downtown Chilliwack crash

Community Events, November 2014

Add an Event


Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Nov 14 edition online now. Browse the archives.