The National Program for Playground Safety (NPPS) declares National Playground Safety Week each April as a time to focus on children’s outdoor play environments.1 Appreciation for an organization or agency who exemplifies the care and concern for children by creating safe play environments is given in the annual presentation of the John Preston Playground Safety Award. The award is named after John Preston, an engineer for the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and a tireless worker for the safety of children.2 The award was first given in 2005.
Recipients of the John Preston Playground Safety Award and their accomplishments are:
2005 Indiana Family and Social Services Administration3
- Conducted playground safety workshops for child care directors
- Assessed the state for playground safety
- Helped to obtain over $900,000 from the Federal Child Care Development Fund to aid over 200 child care centers
- Certified all child care consultants and managers in playground safety
2006 Lee’s Summit R-7 School District, Lee’s Summit, Missouri4
- Formed the Playground Safety Initiative (PSI) for the district
- Had five district personnel complete the NPPS Playground Safety School and the S.A.F.E. certification
- Removed old, outdated and non-compliant equipment and replaced it with more age-appropriate apparatus
- Improved loose-fill surfacing and implemented an on-going preventative maintenance program
- Conducted training for playground supervisors by S.A.F.E. District personnel
- Initiated the “Safe Playground of the Year” award, which is presented annually to the elementary school with the best safety record.
2007 Hawaii Department of Education5
- Assessed all of the state’s playground equipment
- Removed all unsafe and non-compliant equipment
- Developed an age-appropriate equipment replacement program
- Developed and distributed a playground safety video and curriculum linked to Hawaii DOE content standards to all schools with playgrounds
- Partnered with the Hawaii State Legislature for funding to replace playground equipment and provide safety training
- Incorporated regular playground inspections
- Installed safety signage
2008 Rockwall Independent School District in Texas6
- Educated children on how to use playground equipment
- Trained playground supervisors
- Trained maintenance workers
2009 Healthy Child Care of Iowa7
- Comprised of nurses throughout the State of Iowa
- Provided information and consultations of childcare professionals throughout Iowa
2010 Child Care Licensure of Mississippi8
- Required their licensure staff complete either the NPAI Safety Course or the NPPS Inspector’s Course
- Adapted the Consumer Product Safety Commission guidelines as part of the Child Care Licensing Regulations governing child care facilities with the state of Mississippi
- Encouraged child care personnel to take the NPPS Supervisor’s Course and the NPPS Inspector’s Course
2011 Indiana Bureau of Child Care, Child Care Center Licensing Consultants
- Received funding through the American Recovery Act of 2009 earmarked for playgrounds
- Conducted 711 playground audits of 179 child care centers, 16 ministries, and 515 child care homes in 1 year
- Awarded grants to 290 providers
- All Childcare Center Licensing Consultants are certified through NPPS or have certification as a Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI)9
2012 Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners Head Start/Early Head Start
- Has an exemplary record of no playground-related injuries to children
- All of the Head Start Centers are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children with their professional standards
- The staff has received training as Certified Early Childhood Play Inspectors through NPPS
- New ADA accessible play areas have been added to the Centers and outdoor play has been incorporated into their daily lesson plans for the children10
2013 BCI Burke Playground Company
- President Tim Ahern has been a board member of NPPS since 2005
- Represented at ASTM standards meetings
- Distributed Supervision Kits to over 8,000 schools
- Distributed Intensity Kits to thousands of schools to use playground equipment by physical education teachers to increase movement in children11
2014 Blue Springs School District in Blue Springs, Missouri
- Influenced the 12 other schools in the district to install the new turf on all 33 of their playgrounds
- Leaders in the project were Dan Anderson, Director of Buildings and Grounds for the district; Kelly Flax, Principal and Currie Trumble, School Nurse, Dr. Bill Cowling,TUE staff and students, Board of education - all representing Blue Springs School District
- Used was artificial grass produced by SYNLawn, installed by TURFetc
- Playgrounds are inspected by a certified NPPS playground inspector12
2015 United States Department of Defense Child and Youth Programs
- Trained staff to ensure safe and inclusive play areas
- Provided education and training on supervision practices
- Educated staff and inspectors on military installations worldwide13
- 1. “Playground Safety Week.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/index.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 2. “Playground Safety Awards.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/index.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 3. “National Playground Safety Week—2005 John Preston Playground Safety Award.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/johnPreston/2005.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 4. “National Playground Safety Week—2006 John Preston Playground Safety Award.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/johnPreston/2006.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 5. “National Playground Safety Week—2007 John Preston Playground Safety Award.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/johnPreston/2007.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 6. “National Playground Safety Week—2008 John Preston Playground Safety Award.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/johnPreston/2008.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 7. “National Playground Safety Week—2009 John Preston Playground Safety Award.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/johnPreston/2009.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 8. “National Playground Safety Week—2010 John Preston Playground Safety Award.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safetyweek/awards/johnPreston/2010.htm > 4 Feb. 2011.
- 9. “2011 - Indiana Bureau of Child Care, Child Care Center Licensing Consultants.” National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/awards/john-preston-playground-safety-award/2011/indiana-bureau-child-care-child-care-center-licensi > 9 May 2012.
- 10. "2012 - Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners Head Start/Early Head Start." National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/awards/john-preston-playground-safety-award/2012/hillsborough-county-board-county-commissioners-head > 9 May 2012.
- 11. "Awards." National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safety-week/awards > 14 May 2013.
- 12. "Awards." National Program for Playground Safety. < http://www.playgroundsafety.org/safety-week/awards > 28 April 2014
- 13. "2015 - United States Department of Defense Child and Youth Programs. National Program for Playground Safety. < http://playgroundsafety.org/awards/john-preston-playground-safety-award/2015/united-states-department-defense-child-and-youth-pr > 29 Nov. 2016.