The rusty and outdated equipment at will be no more after this weekend, thanks to the work of the school’s PTO. Though the group raised $45,000 to replace the school’s aging playground, there’s still another large obstacle to overcome: building it.
SMH-Quidnessett is seeking volunteers to join its Playground Community Build Day on July 21 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. The build will be led by M.E. Obrien & Sons, but more hands and help are needed to put up the slides, monkey bars and other playground staples.
The PTO has been working for nearly a year and a half to raise and build a new playground for the school. For six years, the school only served grades four and five as the school district experimented with a “pairing” configuration for schools. In fall 2010, North Kingstown returned to the traditional configuration, turning SMH-Quidnessett into a kindergarten through fifth grade school.
But, a playground for five year olds is vastly different than a playground for 10 year olds and school officials realized that the aging and deteriorating playground was not appropriate for all age groups and abilities – especially its younger crowd.
With the help of donors such as , Stop & Shop, Fidelity Matching Grants for Education, , Nickelodeon, , Prudential Gammons Realty, , , The Family Foundation, The Cross Family, the PTO was able to raise funds to renovate the playground. Additionally, the school received a huge boost from the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group and national nonprofit KaBOOM!, which donated $15,000 to the school.
The new equipment will be appropriate for students of all ages and abilities and also benefit children and families in the surrounding neighborhood.
In addition to parents, faculty and staff, associates from , Stop & Shop, , and Whole Foods will join in the build on Saturday.
To sign up to volunteer or for more information, visit the playground build page at www.ourdreamplayground.org and click on the Volunteer tab, or email Christine Arouth at firstname.lastname@example.org.