SANTA ANNA, Texas – A $35,000 grant from the Lower Colorado River Authority will allow the Santa Anna Independent School District to upgrade the playground on its elementary school campus, where much of the existing dilapidated equipment dates back decades.
The Community Development Partnership Program grant, along with $22,500 in matching funds, will purchase new, safer equipment for a playground designed for 5- to 12-year-olds and compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
“To put it in perspective, we have teachers and school board members who played on that playground equipment when they were in elementary school,” Santa Anna Superintendent Todd White said. “We see this as an opportunity to serve our community by having a playground where you don’t have to worry about getting a splinter in your hand or a metal slide that cooks you like a sausage when you’re going down it.”
Santa Anna ISD has about 250 students in kindergarten through high school. White said the playground upgrades are part of the district’s five-year plan that calls for improving both facilities and academic instruction.
Angelia Bostick, the district’s playground project manager, said district officials have been studying options for new playscapes and swing sets, with the goal of purchasing equipment that encourages students to become fit while having fun.
“The more they move after sitting in class, the better they remember,” Bostick said. “And then there’s the community you get in playing together – learning to share and take turns. The playground has a lot of cool aspects to it that go beyond just going outside and getting fresh air, which is fantastic, too.”
The community grant is one of 25 grants awarded recently through LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program, which helps volunteer fire departments, local governments, emergency responders and nonprofit organizations fund capital improvement projects in LCRA’s wholesale electric, water and transmission service areas. The program is part of LCRA’s effort to give back to the communities it serves.
Applications for the next round of grants will be accepted in July. More information is available at lcra.org/cdpp.