New playground equipment installed at Valley View
By Press Staff
ASHWAUBENON – Students at Valley View Elementary School will have a new playground this fall when they return for the 2018-19 school year.
Parents, students, community members and staff at Valley View have been involved over the past three years to raise nearly $75,000 to reach the project’s fund-raising goal. The majority of the money to fund the playground came from the Ola Adams family and the Valley View Elementary School Parent-Teacher Organization.
The Ola Adams trust fund – set up in honor of the late Ola Adams, who moved to Ashwaubenon to be closer to her family after living most of her life in Chicago and having worked as a teacher and a principal – donated more than $100,000 to the district with that contribution divided among the five Ashwaubenon schools.
Funds from the Valley View PTO for the new playground were raised through various events, including the Raise Craze, which focused on completing good deeds throughout the community. Additional funds also came from the Valley View student council and through Valley View school funds.
The design of the new playground was selected by Valley View students this past school year when they were presented with three designs and picked the one chosen by a wide margin.
Valley View families were invited to the school Monday, July 30, when a ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for the new playground with representatives of the Ola Adams family and Valley View PTO joining Valley View’s principals and Superintendent Kurt Weyers in cutting the ribbon to formally welcome students onto the playground.
“We take great pride in our facilities at Valley View and we are very excited to welcome our students back to school with this new playground,” said Principal Andy Bake. “Our hope is that this playground will be a welcoming place for our students and the community for many years to come.”
Bake also pointed out the equipment installation could have cost the district around another $10,000, but was put in place at no additional charge by Ashwaubenon Parks and Recreation Department workers along with some assistance from Lee Recreation, the company where the equipment was purchased.
“We were extremely lucky that the Ashwaubenon Park and Rec Department, who installs playgrounds all over Ashwaubenon, did this all for us for free,” he said. “That is a huge thing that we are just incredibly thankful for. They came and they removed the old playground. They spent over 40 hours and sometimes they had 12-15 workers here installing this entire playground.”
Valley View Associate Principal Doug Pieschek noted the playground will be used by more than 700 students daily during the school year.
“It is important to provide the students with an opportunity to have fun and be active during their recess time so that they are able to be productive while in class,” Pieschek said.
Weyers, who was Valley View’s principal before becoming Ashwaubenon’s superintendent July 1, said every decision made in the district is done in the interest of children.
“Know that this playground is for you and for many kids and generations to come,” he said.
“Congratulations. Good job of choosing (the playground). You did a great job of designing it. And I look forward to seeing all of you play many hours on it.”