Although students at Jarvis Traditional Elementary have been making the most of their new, accessible playground for the last several weeks, their excitement at celebrating the official opening of it was plain to see (and hear!).
The universally accessible playground was made possible after the school received a $165,000 grant through the provincial government’s Playground Equipment Program.
A ceremony was held inside the gymnasium for all students to celebrate the new playground. Grade 7 students Anisha and Aikan emceed the event, while several students from Grades 1, 2 and 3 shared their thoughts on the new playground.
The event was attended by a number of special guests including the Honourable Rachna Singh, Minister for Education and Child Care and MLA for Surrey-Green Timbers, the Honourable Ravi Kahlon, MLA for North Delta, Val Windsor, Chair of the Delta Board of Education, Ammen Dhillon, Trustee, Delta Board of Education, and Doug Sheppard, Superintendent of Schools. At the ceremony, it was reiterated that play areas are important in supporting students’ physical literacy and a valuable addition to the entire community.
“Our government knows how important it is for kids to have safe, accessible play spaces to explore and enjoy during their school day,” said Rachna Singh, Minister of Education and Child Care. “That’s why we’ve committed over $30 million dollars for new playgrounds throughout the province, just like this one at Jarvis Elementary, helping take the fundraising burden off of parents.”
“I’m thrilled to see this third playground opening in North Delta with funding through the Playground Equipment Program, and updating another space to stay active and build their social skills in our community. Our government continues to put students first by investing in accessible and safe playgrounds so children have safe and fun places to play and to develop into the leaders of tomorrow,” said Minister Kahlon.
“I have always viewed playgrounds as an extension of the classroom. It is where social learning takes place; where students learn to be citizens through play and sharing and collaboration. Fred Rogers once said that “play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning.” The importance of giving our students a safe place to do just that cannot be overstated. Today, we are celebrating another milestone in Jarvis Traditional Elementary’s history and our collective progress in making Delta School District an innovative, inclusive community where all learners belong and everyone soars,” Chair Val Windsor told the audience of students, staff and special guests who gathered for the official opening.
Thanks were expressed to all those who contributed to the project’s success – a project that will serve not only Jarvis Traditional Elementary’s students, but also the entire local community.
Last year, the Ministry of Education and Child Care announced a new round of playground funding, with another Delta school, Richardson Elementary, selected to receive $165,000 for outdoor play equipment.