During holidays in Australia most schools close and lock their gates. It reduces the need for maintenance, supervision and incidences of vandalism. However what if schools opened their playgrounds to the public? What is prospective families could come and play?
NSW Department of Education has decided to open up 42 schools for community use from 8am to 6pm. “Instead of locking the gate this summer, the trial program will share this public space to allow people to exercise and play at their local school over summer holiday break.”
The idea flows from a concept in New York. "When New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg announced his goal to ensure that by 2030 every single New Yorker would live within a 10-minute walk from a park, the idea seemed preposterously ambitious — impossible, even." However " the city had already identified schoolyards as deeply underused resources, used only a few hours per day and only by the school population. The rest of the time — weekends, evenings and summers — most schoolyards were fenced and locked to the surrounding communities."
“Our schools need to be more than brick and mortar structures with classrooms, gymnasiums, and auditoriums that come alive between the opening and closing bells; they are true assets for the entire community that must be mobilized to provide safe spaces for children and families throughout the day, every day,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams.
Is it time for your school to consider unlocking the gates? What marketing opportunities would it present to make use of your facilities during school holidays?