New playground funding for Roosevelt School approved

Roosevelt Avenue Elementary School. File photo

After five years of fundraising and appeals to the community for assistance, Roosevelt Avenue Elementary will be the next school to get a new playground.

At its meeting on Nov. 27, the Town Council voted 9-0 to allocate $180,000 for the playground. This amount comes from $450,000 given to the Amvet playground project, of which $270,000 was spent. An additional $100,000 was provided by state Rep. Adam Scanlon as part of the state budget. The combined $280,000 will fully cover the cost of buying playground equipment, safety surfacing, site preparation and fencing at the Roosevelt School.

“We went under budget (for the Amvet playground),” Town Manager Michael Borg told the council at its meeting on Nov. 27. “We can use those funds for another worthwhile project.”

The request was initially reviewed by the Finance Subcommittee and unanimously approved at its meeting on Nov. 21. Town Councilor Mark Gould, a subcommittee member, said a new playground would encourage students to play outside during recess.

“This is a solid investment for our community,” Gould said. “It’s good for everyone at the school as well.”

Council President Justin Pare added that once installed, all of North Attleborough’s elementary schools would have playground equipment. Pare said the installation of the new playground at Roosevelt is scheduled for next spring.

“Now every school will have a playground in North Attleborough,” Pare said. “That’s amazing. We should all be proud of that.”

A committee exploring the creation of a new playground at the Roosevelt School was formed in 2019. In March 2020, meetings were paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2023, the fundraising efforts resumed, with the committee raising $8,700 by May.

The original estimate for the new playground was approximately $200,000, but between inflation and cost increases, this rose to $270,000.

“I am so grateful, that’s the biggest word that comes to my mind,” said Roosevelt Elementary School Principal Jeannine Magliocco. “I’m thankful for the committee that came together, for Adam Scanlon and the town for coming through for what these kids need. They deserve better than what they have right now.”