GREAT FALLS — In addition to a new building, Longfellow Elementary School (1101 7th Avenue South) features an inclusive playground designed to be used by children of all abilities.
It’s the only one of its kind in Great Falls and it was donated by the family of Margaret Grey along with D.A. Davidson, who both partnered with the Great Falls Public Schools Foundation to bring it to life.
Longfellow principal Shannon Guilfoyle says the kids have been overjoyed with their new playground and they aren’t the only ones.
“I get people from out of town see me working and ask how we got this wonderful playground,” Guilfoyle said. “I’m so glad we got to dedicate it to Margaret. That woman was a trailblazer and reminded me a lot of my mother in that sense.”
When the new Longfellow school was being built, Guilfoyle says that was part of the plan of the building was to include a playground like this that was more accessible to more kids.
Stephanie Schnider, director of the GFPS Foundation, said the partnership was great to see as they were able to make something great not just for Longfellow, but for the city: “It was a really special opportunity for the Grey’s to hear about the impact of the playground being used for a year not just by local families, but also families across the city that really excited about having this available."
Guilfoyle added that the playground is open to the public outside of school hours.
Meadowlark Elementary School is currently adding new playground equipment that will also be all-inclusive.