KOMPAN playground helps school understand daily challenges

Cases

Hay Lane School contacted KOMPAN for help in improving their main school playground to give students access to facilities that other children have, but in a safe school environment.

Catering for children with severe learning difficulties, complex and profound physical difficulties and autistic spectrum disorders, Hay Lane School has 120 students aged four to nineteen. Hay Lane and its staff face complex needs and challenges, so the school wanted a school playground partner who understood their needs and had experience in this area to help them with the project.

The opportunity to refurbish the school's existing playground arose when a £67,000 grant from the Big Lottery Fund was confirmed. However, the money came with a tight time limit for spending, so timescale was critical.

KOMPAN were able to provide a design based on previous projects and consultation with the staff of Hay Lane. The design focussed on a junior area with role play and tactile equipment from the KOMPAN Moments range, and a more energetic senior area using dynamic equipment from the KOMPAN Galaxy range.

A Corocord trampoline net was also used to provide a range of experiential play opportunities. The trampoline membrane, integrated into the net, invites children to hop and jump around. Elasticity is limited so the jumping net can also be used as a meeting place or as a quiet place to sit. The playground was completed with a swing area that includes a bird's nest swing.

A major theme for this playground was that it should be completely inclusive and accessible for all students to use together, regardless of ability. A yellow band was added around safety areas to help the children learn to be careful when the equipment was in use.

When the new playground opened, it marked the culmination of a lot of determination and hard work on the part of the school's dedicated staff, who wanted to make sure their students had the best facilities available for outdoor play.

Head teacher: Jenny Drake
"The school playground is fantastic and the reduction in behaviour problems over the lunch break has been of great benefit to us all. We wonder how we managed without it."

Fast facts

Location: Hay Lane, United Kingdom

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