(SPRINGFIELD, Ky.) – The Washington County School District was recently the recipient of a donation from Toyotomi America towards the construction of an accessible playground. As part of its 20th year anniversary, the local manufacturing corporation, which started production in 2000, manufactures service and OEM parts and currently employs about 480 people, gifted the WCSD with $10,000 to fund the playground behind the TEL Center (formerly Washington County Elementary School). According to Jason Simpson, assistant superintendent, and director of special education for the district, the goal is to create a playground that could be accessed by all children. The district is providing three pieces of accessible playground equipment, and the donation from Toyotomi America is being used for installation, ground covering, and other needs to finish the project.


(Photo by Hillary C. Wright-Kaufman)


“We had a few different ideas for what to do with the donation, but we decided on the donation to the playground because several of our team members have children in the district,” says Emily Richerson, human resource specialist for the corporation. “We understand that the playground equipment had been there for several years and there were no options for handicapped children. [We] wanted to give them an area to play in. We believe this will be a great addition for so many children and families to be able to enjoy this new portion of the playground.”

Accessible Playground 1

(Photo by Hillary C. Wright-Kaufman)

“The Washington County School District is truly touched by the generosity of Toyotomi America,” says WCSD Superintendent Dr. J. Robin Cochran. “We are so excited about this project. It will enormously benefit our students, allowing for more equitable opportunities for all children in our community.  It is always heartwarming to see local industries come together for the betterment of our schools. We are grateful to Toyotomi America for the community partnership.”

The playground is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Accessible Playground 2

(Photo by Hillary C. Wright-Kaufman)