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April 18, 2016

KSD receives $200K grant for playground equipment

Kennewick School District will receive $200,000 in state grant funds to improve playground equipment at Amistad, Edison and Washington elementary schools.

The program, administered by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, awarded a total of $5 million as part of the Healthy Kids-Healthy Schools grant approved by the state Legislature. Grant awards were based on a number of factors, including the free and reduced-meal rate of the student population. 

“The timing of the grant fit in with the district’s plan to begin replacing elementary playground equipment on a rotating schedule as part of the asset preservation program,” states Vic Roberts, executive director of business and operations. “Many of the playground structures in the district are more than 50 years old.”

Over the past few years, the district has removed unsafe structures, repaired existing structures and added wood chips to fall areas.

The district’s long-term plan is to develop three playground structure areas for each of these elementary schools -- an area for younger children (grades kindergarten through third), an area for older children focused on upper body activity, and a multi-use area.

Kennewick School District received the maximum grant amount allowable, $200,000, to purchase the equipment. The district will fund the installation costs estimated at $113,000. The work will be completed this summer.

The program aligns with Gov. Jay Inslee’s Healthiest Next Generation Initiative, which seeks to create the healthiest next generation of Washingtonians by promoting healthy schools, early learning centers and communities.