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Playground Investments Approved

School Board Approves Investment in New Playground Construction and Renovation

As part of our ongoing commitment to providing safe and enriching environments for our students, the Cabell County School District has approved the allocation of funds for the construction of new playgrounds at three new elementary schools slated to open over the next year and the significant renovation of Southside Elementary's playground this school year.

Superintendent Dr. Ryan Saxe says:

“I am deeply grateful for the Board of Education’s approval of my recommendation to fund playground projects at Davis Creek, Southside Elementary, Milton, and Meadows Elementary schools. Our district’s strategic approach to budgeting and support underscores our unwavering commitment to enhancing the educational experiences of our public school students.

The Board’s contribution to these playgrounds marks a significant advancement in our mission to offer the finest educational environments possible in Cabell County. We recognize that our allocations are only part of the greater community effort needed to fund the types of playgrounds our schools and students want, but we are proud to be able to take a more significant role in contributing to the fundraising efforts of our amazing schools, Parent Teacher Associations, Parent Teacher Organizations, Local School Improvement Councils, and community groups. I am thankful for the Board’s endorsement and the community’s cooperation in making these playground projects a reality."

The Board’s allocation of funds includes $400 per student toward the following projects:

  • Southside Elementary: Allocation of $154,400.00 for playground replacement.
  • Davis Creek Elementary: Allocation of $98,000.00 for new playground construction.
  • Milton Elementary: Allocation of $223,200.00 for new playground construction.
  • Meadows Elementary: Allocation of $97,200.00 for new playground construction.

These allocations, based upon student enrollment, will ensure that our students have access to high-quality playgrounds that promote physical activity, social interaction, and imaginative play.

Traditionally, the responsibility for funding playgrounds has fallen to school-based fundraising and parent-teacher organizations because the West Virginia School Building Authority does not provide funding for playgrounds when renovating or building new elementary schools. However, we at the Cabell County School District firmly believe that no school is complete without an adequate playground for students to enjoy. Therefore, we have taken proactive steps to ensure that our new schools have high-quality playgrounds upon opening.

In addition to supporting new playground construction, there is also a pressing need to replace the playground structure at Southside Elementary, which is becoming too costly to repair. Playground equipment and installation are extremely costly due to the materials required to ensure student

safety, well-being, and equipment longevity.

The total cost of the playgrounds that schools hope to construct may exceed what the district has allocated. While Davis Creek and Southside have been successful in securing nearly all the funds needed to build a playground with the features they hope to include, others are still fundraising. All schools would welcome any opportunities for donations or sponsorships to help enhance their playgrounds and amenities. Sponsorship may include, but is not limited to, dedication or signage of specific pieces of playground equipment.

Over the next several years, through strategic budgeting of established funding sources including the proposed excess levy, Cabell County Schools will allocate $215,500 annually to playgrounds and outdoor learning spaces. This will allow the district to contribute to fundraising efforts at additional schools throughout Cabell County that require playground and outdoor learning space improvements. Renovating and enhancing playgrounds and outdoor learning spaces is an important step in our efforts to create the best learning environments for our students and communities.

For more information, please contact Ashley Stephens at 304.528.5340 or