Question: Playground

Our PTA is trying to raise money for a playground. So far we have raised approximately $25,000 of the $40,000 needed. Have people found it typical in a public school that once the funds are raised, the principal alone takes the money and decides what equipment will be purchased with it? The playground vendor and the break down of costs have already been provided to the principal but after having requested this material several times from both the PTA President and principal, we (the Playground Fundraising Committee) have been unable to see it. When people ask us what the cost breakdown is, we are unable to give them a detailed answer. Is this usual?

Asked by Anonymous



Advice from PTO Today

Craig writes:
I wouldn't say that's normal. Typically the playground committee does the hard work of researching, pricing, and recommending what equipment the playground should include. The principal has final say, of course, but if there's a disagreement it's usually worked out through discussions and more research. To be honest, I don't think it makes sense for the principal -- or any one person -- to make this decision on his own. It's a large cash outlay, and it's not as simple as saying "this looks fun, and I think kids would like that, too." It takes some thought to create a playground that works for kids of wide ranging abilities, interests, and ages.

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