The Denbury School Association; Registered Charity number 1045335 are applying to Jewson - Building Better Communities for support with a redevelopment project to make safe and improve an outdoor learning area at Denbury Primary School, near Newton Abbot in Devon. The limited school budget means that most projects must be financed from the fundraising activities of this charity. The school is located in a rural village and currently serves 112 children on-roll. Children at the school are aged 4-11 years and are from the village of Denbury and surrounding communities.
The existing flooring surface is timber decking, which has in the past, provided and all-weather surface for the pupils to use, but unfortunately since its installation it has degraded and is rotten in several places. The outside area can be accessed via the outside field area or a door at the rear of a classroom and has served as an excellent learning area, but unfortunately cannot be utilised with the current condition of the decking. The fencing is rotten and part of the decking has collapsed. A kind group of community volunteers have removed the collapsed area so that it doesn’t pose a risk. The children have enjoyed this outside space which housed a playhouse, role play area, reading zone, sandpit area and mud kitchen, but it is now unusable. The area is an excellent provision to teach science and practical maths. In previous years, the area has also been used as a popular parent drop-off point to ease congestion within the corridor inside the building, but now, due to the unsafe surface are unable to use it for this purpose.
The project includes replacing the decking floor provision for a safe alternative, rerouting drainage, adding in a sun shelter, screening the wire fence from the neighbouring property and replacing the rotten fencing, will have direct a direct positive impact on the parents, teachers and children. The benefits of the project will be far reaching; in addition to providing a safe useable space for teaching and learning, it will promote increased physical activity, it will encourage role play and collaborative cohesion in addition to serving as a valuable ‘extension’ of the classroom and parent drop-off point. We are very eager to make the area safe and useable as soon as we can so that it can be enjoyed and usilised by all of the current and future school community.