Crozet Elementary’s Piddly Playground – Part 1 of 3

Crozet Elementary's way-too-small playground.

I’m not alone in my assessment of the tiny playground.

My little one described it as “tiny” and “short” … and no swings?


I wonder … how much would it cost for a better playground? Think the Crozet Elementary PTO or community could or would raise sufficient funds?




  1. Julia Haydenjulenesque

    @realcrozetva That playground is too small for when I was a kid growing up in Crozet. Why do people keep forgetting Crozet’s population?

  2. Allie Peschcrozette

    @realcrozetva That makes me sad. No swings? The old one was better than that!


  3. Amy Eastlack
    SuzySaidCville

    @realcrozetva Is that seriously the Crozet Elementary playground? Agree with you that it is WAY too small!

Part 2 – Guess How Much the Crozet Playground Cost?

Part 3 – More on the Crozet Playground – This time with invoices!

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28 Replies to “Crozet Elementary’s Piddly Playground – Part 1 of 3”

  1. Bigger question is why did it open 8 days AFTER school started ? Why wasn’t contractor working weekends/ evenings to get it done so kids didn’t have to have recess in the gym ?? Those kids were so excited but couldn’t go near the new playground since it was a mud pit out there and wasn’t done. So right after they come back from summer when they need recess the most they are stuck inside.
    The swings are still there and there is small feature on the other side reserved for older kids only(3rd grade and up).

  2. I asked my 5th grader what she thought of the new playground, she remarked that she’d rather sit in the shade. It’s too small and the other feature is not big enough for a class to participate at the same time.

    Now lets see if Ms. Crummie will do something about it, hopefully everyone will ask her tonight at back-to-school.

  3. Looking at the playground again this afternoon, it is clear that its size is remarkably inadequate for the number of children that need to play on it.

    The big kids can’t use it if the little kids are? The little kids can’t use the web on the other side?

    I sincerely believe that our kids need a lot more space to play … and I think that the community would support (and pay for) a more reasonably sized playground set.

    The more I looked at it the sadder I got.

  4. Third Grader: “Are they done with the playground?….That is all there is?” Kindergartner: “I like the old one more betterer.”

    I as a strapped parent would have been happy to bake, borrow and beg for a playground that the kids and the beautiful setting deserves. The kids were so looking forward to the new playground, particularly when they had seen the newer ones at Meriwether Lewis Elem. (partly paid for with money form PTO) and Brownsville. That unfortuantly got their hopes up too high. Guess we will be trecking to Brownsville’s playground for fun on weekends….

    1. Ms. Crummie said it won’t get any bigger.

      Now, the school is waiting the County Parks and Rec. to finish the soccer/baseball fields. Or in other words, a LONG WAIT since we all know how long it takes the County to get things done. And since CES always gets the short end of the stick when it comes to having money spent, it could be a long summer for our kids.

  5. Ridiculously small, considering they have at least 50+ kids playing on that one little structure. Teacher at back to school night said it sounded like a bee hive, just a whirling of noise, because they were all crammed in there. I mean seriously, when the shopping was done for the structure, didnt they have a clue about the amount of kids that would be playing at the same time. Soo sad and disappointing!

  6. Ah, so the swings are still where they were. That’s good. But it is still seriously sad. However, as a CES alum (married to a Meriwether alum…) I can tell you that this is not the only time that Crozet has gotten the short end of the stick.

  7. Brownsville has the best – play areas are built for specific grades. But to get something like that, the Crozet PTO and parents must get involved. Over the past many years fundraisers have provided better items than the county budget can provide.

  8. I would have been nice to know ahead of time that it was going to be this small. The parents could have been given an option to do fundraisers. We could have come up with a better idea before it was build and before any ground was broken.
    Whoever is responsible for this playground didn’t have the parents input or the kids feeling in their thoughts.
    Jim…. what #’s or email addresses did you use so we all can contribute our feelings ?
    Thanks.

  9. All that needs to be done is to add-on to what is already in place. To make the current structure larger and all grade friendly.

  10. Well, that’s all you get for $125,000….LOL.

    What we need is school choice. I was opposed to it but now I know it is the solution to many ills. It’s my tax dollars. I should be able to take my kids where I want. Imagine if we charged everybody $11,000 a year in taxes and then you could shop for groceries for “free”. We assign half of Crozet to Harris Teeter and the other half to the Great Value (IGA). You MUST shop in the store you are assigned to. How stupid. But that’s what we do with schools.

    The schools are terrified of competition. The wealthy have school choice but the rest of us pay our taxes and go where we are told. The wealthy, of course, pay twice for the privilege…once in taxes and once in tuition to private school. Let’s bring school choice to taxpayers ! Then the schools will have a vested interest in getting the most out of their funding.

    1. A self-defeating proposition.
      Yank away the tax revenues from these schools and you have NO schools left- the only source of hard money the schools need. Besides the private schools if you can afford paying for them and driving each day twice for at least 40 minutes to GET them there yourself.
      As Amy correctly states: the success is vert dependent on Parents’ effort and commitment to be involved, volunteer and fundraising. Murray and Meriwether Lewis ES are for that reason highly succesful too. The BOS is already shorting the schools and will do that more.
      If you want you can send your kid to another Albemarle Co school, no problem but you need to do the transportation yourself then.

      1. “If you want you can send your kid to another Albemarle Co school, no problem but you need to do the transportation yourself then.”

        Not correct. You can do this but you must pay for the privilege..about $4000 a year. If I live in Albemarle Co and pay taxes, why can’t I send my kid to any Albemarle school I choose ?

        I’m happy with the schools here but I’d never send my kids to the schools I grew up in Richmond. The people living in my old neighborhood deserve a choice with their tax dollars rather than just being stuck with bureaucrats drawing lines on a map.

        It’s your money and your schools. You worked hard to earn money and pay it to the county in taxes. You deserve a basic choice is how you spend it. It’s time people realize it’s your money and it doesn’t belong to the government just because they take it from you.

      2. This, too is interesting:

        Here are just a few additional ideas for President Obama to consider:

        Schools should be competitive. Many Americans wring their hands over the strengths of Japanese school-children, especially in math and science. Since I happen to be in Japan I asked a few people about the schools here. Their descriptions of education in Japan went beyond mere months per year. Japanese students must apply to the best high schools. And where you go to high school has a big bearing on where you’ll go to college and end up in life. This is Thomas Jefferson or Maggie Walker writ large. When I asked if this was fair they bluntly said, “No, but life’s not fair either.”.

        Schools should be intense. A Frenchman told me of his daughter’s semester abroad in America. She described her time in a top grade American school as a vacation. Her assigned homework was much less in America than in France. She loves her expanded social life but understands that her studies are slipping while she slacks off in America.

        Schools should use cutting edge technology. One of my friends has a son attending a private school in Northern Virginia. Mandatory laptop computers for every high school student. The lessons are online, there is online tutoring and some homework assignment questions are instantly graded as either right or wrong – with an explanation. A new netbook computer costs about $450 (retail) and (arguably) could last all 4 years of high school. Is this really too much?

        Teachers should be paid for performance. The teaching profession has become old, stale and obsolete in the United States. In New York City it’s so hard to get rid of under-performing teachers that there are special “rubber room” buildings to stockpile teachers while their performance reviews drag on – sometimes for years. You can read more here. Bad teachers should be dispensed with quickly. Good teachers should be paid more than they presently receive.

  11. Mary,
    I could not disagree with you more. We desparately need to retain our local schools. They are the cornerstone of communities and provide all our children with a valuable anchor with which they can become citizens of communities. My middle schooler was part of the fifth grade class that brought the bell from the Old Crozet school back to CES. For my child, and many others it was a meaningful experience to locate, identify and restore a meaningful part of their community. If you want more from your public school, then I urge you to become involved in the PTO, volunteer in the school, go to a Board meeting. Brownsville has a fabulous Bee program becaues their parents got together and made it happen. Crozet rarely gets anyone who isn’t already an officer to come to their PTO meetings. Ruining an important community connection for children is not the answer to this.

    1. Who said anything about not supporting local schools ? With school choice, you get a voucher. You can take your tax dollars to whatever school you want. Crozet or Brownsville or Saint Anne’s or wherever. Kids from Waynesboro could come to Western if they wanted. You could start your own school, get the proper certifications, and start competing for the voucher money. Most folks would choose to go close to home but could vote with their feet if they felt they could do better elsewhere. This is what wealthy people do already. I just think that everyone should be able to take their educational tax dollars and spend them in the school of their choice.

      Why on earth are you forced to pay and then have no choice in where your kid can go ?

      1. Watch this.

        This is all I’ll add to this tangent:

        I’ve never quite understood how the public school system of the wealthiest country in the world–one where every President pledges to “fix” education and one where education spending continually goes up–could be so intractably horrible. The problem seems too big, bloated, complex and confusing to even have a smart debate around, much less try to fix. Fortunately, since I’m not a parent, it’s an issue where I can just throw up my hands, assume any politician saying they’ll fix it is lying, and start saving for the private school I’ll one day need when I do have kids.

        But the brilliance of “Waiting for Superman” is in how it breaks the problem with education down into mostly one simple problem: Bad teachers can’t be fired, good teachers can’t get rewarded for being good, whether that’s promotions or merit-based raises. Two of the most shocking scenes depict both sides of this coin. One showed a “rubber room” where teachers awaiting disciplinary hearings– accused of crimes as extreme as sexual assault– get paid a full salary to do nothing for as long as eight months. Another told the story of Michelle Rhee, who proposed that teachers in DC could double their incomes if they swapped to a merit-based rather than tenure system. It was so threatening that the labor unions wouldn’t allow the issue to come to a vote. Equally shocking was something called “the Lemon Dance” where public schools in one district just swapped their horrible teachers they couldn’t fire in hopes of getting a less-worse lemon.

  12. Why would you take down the old playground (which to my knowledge was not broken), when you are cutting our teachers across the county.

    1. The same reason they are starting Streetscapes now instead of using the mney where it is needed the most. Channel 29 news had a mention
      of the unhappy people in Crozet over this playground. Does anybody
      understand that some communities would of been thrilled to have any
      improvements to their school playgrounds???

  13. I am a teacher at Crozet Elem and was part of the playground committee. It took a great amount of time and discussion to come up with what we would like for our new play set. The old play set was rusting out and needed repeated repairs. There are 8 swings on the playground and a new, separate play area for older, bigger children(which was left out of the photo). At first glance this new set does look small but it has several levels and there is plenty of room for 3-4 classes at a time to play. I wish people would get the information correct before making comments. The children love the play areas. They also play on the beautiful new soccer fields and basketball courts. For those people who are disappointed with the new playground, please don’t talk about it around your children because they love it. When I was a child we had swings and a metal slide. That was it except for our imaginations and a big oak tree in the school yard. Please, let it be about play and not about the size of the structure.

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