Students at Gray Elementary School could soon be enjoying recess with new slides and swings.

The county’s Health, Education and Welfare Committee approved a request Thursday from Washington County Schools officials to use a portion of the system’s educational capital funds to pay for playground systems to replace older equipment that had been removed from the school for safety reasons.

The funding transfer will next be heard by the county’s Budget Committee on Wednesday.

Jerry Boyd, the director of county schools, said the county’s Board of Education has asked the County Commission to adjust its 5-year plan so the school system can use $165,000 from the capital fund to buy and install the playground equipment.

Boyd said the request comes as the school system evaluates the playground and recreation needs at all of its schools.

Sign up to Johnson City Press Today!

Top stories, delivered straight to your inbox.

“We recently identified problems at Sulphur Springs and Fall Branch schools,” Boyd told HEW committee members.

The director said the new systems for the Gray school will replace separate equipment in the pre-K and kindergarten, grades 1-3 and grades 3-6 playgrounds. He said that equipment had been “condemned and removed” to protect the safety of students.

The new Playcraft systems will be installed by Great Southern Recreation LLC of Murfreesboro.

Commissioner Jim Wheeler told Boyd he was pleased to see the school board agree to cover the cost of replacing the playground equipment.

“I think it’s too much to ask the PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) to raise that money,” Wheeler said.

Try the Johnson City Press app today. Download here from Google Play and the App Store.

Recommended Videos

Press Senior Reporter

Robert Houk has served as a journalist and photographer at the Press since 1987. He is a recipient of the Associated Press Managing Editors Malcom Law Award for investigative reporting.

Recommended for you

Trending Recipe Video