The Board of School Trustees (the “Board”) supports, in principle, the establishment of creative play areas or the upgrading of existing ones on school grounds. As capital funding for these projects is not available through the Ministry of Education, all associated costs for these projects must be borne by schools. This includes: equipment costs, the VSB Board supply and installation of the resilient ground cover, VSB Board labour installation costs, and on-going VSB Board maintenance costs.
Guidelines for planning creative play areas, obtaining approval, and procedures for project scheduling and development are outlined as follows:
Procedures for Planning Creative Play Areas or Upgrading Existing Ones
To upgrade existing equipment or develop new creative play areas, the school administrator should initiate discussions with the Grounds Supervisor to review guidelines for play equipment, siting and safety concerns, and the role of the parents in the development and installation of the creative play areas. During these initial discussions, the Grounds Supervisor will advise the school of the estimated additional annual maintenance costs associated with the project. In addition to reviewing the proposal with the Maintenance and Construction Division - Grounds Section, the school administrator must advise the associate superintendent and the Planning and Facilities Division that a project is being considered. All projects should be approved by the VSB Board Facilities and Finance Development Team.
Also, as the principal is responsible for determining that the project is acceptable to the adjacent neighbours, residents in the neighbourhood should be informed of any proposed new creative play areas.
Guidelines for Preparing Proposals
After consulting with VSB staff and developing plans for the school site, a formal proposal should be submitted to the Planning and Facilities Division for review and consideration by the VSB Board Facilities and Finance Development Team. The proposal must be approved by the Facilities and Finance Development Team and may have to be approved by the Board. This proposal should include information about:
- proposed location(s) of improvements and present use of the site: improvements to be provided together with detailed plans, sketches, pictures or models showing the location and type of equipment;
- the role of teachers, students, and community organizations in this proposed development, both in the planning and installation of the proposed equipment;
- estimates of all material, equipment, demolition and removal, labour costs (including VSB Board costs for resilient surface materials or other charges), and details about funding sources;
- details regarding the scheduling of the proposed development, including any information about the phasing of the installation;
- brief history of project development and compliance with Board policies and procedures (eg. Rentals and Earthquake) , including support from school staff and SCC District Parent Advisory Council (DPAC) as well as consultation with neighbours.
Procedures for Project Scheduling and Development
After submitting a proposal and receiving FFDT and Board approval, if required, school staff can schedule implementation activities. The Grounds Supervisor should be informed about the installation date, and the unions will be notified about the project according to standard VSB Board procedures. VSB Board staff will be scheduled to prepare the site or to deliver tools as required. When new equipment is being installed, the school will contact the supplier to arrange for the equipment to be delivered and ensure that a supervisor from the supplier is present at the school on the date of construction.
Following completion of the project, the VSB Board Grounds Division will inspect and approve the equipment. The Grounds Division will also install, on a cost-recovery basis, the Board-approved resilient surface material as soon as possible after the installation of the equipment. The Grounds Division will continue to inspect and repair this equipment at least twice annually on an on-going basis, as part of their routine grounds maintenance program.
Procedure for Receiving Goods and Services Tax (GST) Rebate
To receive the GST rebate, the playground equipment supplier should invoice the school directly.
After the project is completed and the Grounds Division has inspected and approved the equipment, the school administrator is responsible for completing a maintenance contract. This form is available from the Grounds Division. The completed form should be returned to the Grounds Division, and a copy should be sent to the VSB Board Accounting Division.
DMT Responsibility: D-FSS