The Parent Advisory Council wants to buy this playground equipment for Discovery Passage Elementary

School needs cash fast to buy playground

Small Campbell River elementary school needs to come with $7,000 by next week

Discovery Passage school has finally found a playground, but it needs the community’s help to get it and it needs help fast.

The tiny 60-student school near Painter’s Lodge has not had an adequate playground for nearly a year and the school’s parent advisory council has worked tirelessly to fundraise to buy the equipment.

The parents recently found a play structure at a discounted price but they are still short on money and the sale ends Jan. 31.

“We have come across an amazing deal on a playground, 50 per cent off this unit,” said Jessica Taylor, chair of the parent advisory council. “This particular unit is valued at $40,000 on sale for $20,000. Another school is looking at purchasing the same unit which would mean that would cut the cost of shipping, installation fee, as well as the supervisor fee.”

But the school is roughly $7,000 short of the $25,000 it needs to purchase the equipment, have it shipped and installed, and put in cement and gravel.

“We are asking for cash donations by any companies, local residents, anyone who is able to help us out,” Taylor said. “We are a strong group of PAC (parent advisory council) members and we have worked way too hard to throw in the towel now. We are a determined group of parents that want a playground for our children’s school.”

The six-member parent advisory council has raised more than $8,000 through a fun fair, magazine sales, student Kyle Roemer’s pledges for tackling the Great Walk from Tahsis to Gold River, and a number of other fundraisers.

Added to that total is a $10,000 reimbursement from the provincial government for a playground addition the parent advisory council purchased in November 2010.

That structure, which is aimed at older kids and can accommodate 18-20 kids at a time, took the parent group seven years to fundraise for.

Just after installing the addition, the school district tore down the school’s original playground because of rotten and unsafe beams and posts.

The parent advisory council was left with the responsibility of replacing the equipment because of a lack of funds in the school district budget.

Taylor said she hopes there is a company, or individual, out there that is willing to help the parents out.

To offer assistance e-mail or drop by the school at 2050 Pengelley Road.