Parents call on school district to make playground safer for students


OAKLAND (KRON) – Children are being told to watch their steps on the playground at an East Bay elementary school.

That is because at least one child has been injured. 

Now, some parents are calling on the school district to make the playground safe for students.

Two parents point out what they say are hazardous potholes, cracks and uneven pavement on the children’s playground at Franklin Elementary School in Oakland.  

“It’s really an ongoing problem,” Nina Sarazin said.

“Scratches, bruises, cuts,” Mary Ann Cheddadi said.

Mary Ann Cheddadi describes some of the injuries she found on her 8-year-old son after the school called her about her son being hurt on the playground.

“They told me to come pick him up because he was bleeding, so bad I had to bring him an extra shirt,” Cheddadi said. 

Nina Sarazin says another problem is the rubber padding underneath the play structure is no longer providing a cushion when kids fall on the ground.

“We have kindergarten up to 5th grade so those kids really need the protection,” Sarazin said.

They both say the problem has gotten progressively worse in the last three years. 

They say contacted KRON4 because they are frustrated with the Oakland Unified School District’s response.

“They been saying they already have somebody looking at the playground but nothing is getting done,” Cheddadi said.

“I would like the playground structure not only to have appropriate guidance but to be replaced,” Sarazin said.

There have been 285 signatures on petition to renovate Franklin’s Elementary playground. 

Officials at the Oakland Unified School District sent KRON4 this statement which reads:

“The District’s Building and Grounds staff has visited Franklin Elementary School and examined the pavement problems on the playground. All of our students need a clean, safe and nurturing environment in which to play and grow, and with that in mind, our staff will be working to fix it starting tomorrow (Thursday, September 26). The pavement will be patched up and students will be able to play on it in the coming days.”

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