Procedure #NP460.0, School Grounds Enhancement Projects


Board Procedure #NP460.0, School Grounds Enhancement Projects outlines the actions to be followed by Board staff when initiating, managing and maintaining school grounds enhancement projects.

On this page:


Stakeholder Groups with Responsibilities under this Policy

  • Board of Trustees
  • Director
  • Superintendents
  • Principals
  • Plant Services
  • Purchasing Services
  • School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee


Relationship to Board priorities

Policy #460.0, School Grounds Enhancement Projects applies to the following Board priorities.

Multi-Year Plan (2010-2014)

Student Achievement and Well-being - Continuously increase student achievement and well-being through a culture of caring and learning, which emphasizes:

  • inviting physical environments in schools and workplaces;
  • safe and supportive schools and workplaces; and
  • engagement of students, staff, parents/guardians and community members in public education.

Delivery of Effective and Appropriate Educational Programs - Deliver effective and appropriate educational programs to each student by embracing environmental awareness.

Stewardship of Board Resources – Align human and financial resources with Board priorities by modeling continuous environmental sustainability.

Director’s Annual Plan (2012-2013)


Student Achievement and Well-Being

  • Increase the number of schools and workplaces attaining gold level Eco Certification

Effective & Sustainable Educational Programs

  • Maintain focus on environmental sustainability in the curriculum

Stewardship of Board Resources

  • Maintain positive climates for learning and working with all students and employee groups

Plant Services – Mission Statement

Plant Services is dedicated to delivering the highest quality service to York Region students, staff and communities through the provision of safe, sustainable learning environments and facilities. Our dedicated and efficient staff members are committed to proactive, responsive, consultative service by; striving for continuous improvement, acting in an environmentally responsible manner, ensuring legislative compliance, applying the best uses of technology, providing timely responses, and taking initiative and adapting to change.


Implementation Timelines



Document History and Previous Versions

Approved June 2007

Revised May 2008

Working Document January 2013

Revised June 2013


It is the expectation of the York Region District School Board that all employees, students and persons invited to or visiting Board property, or partaking/volunteering in Board or school-sponsored events and activities, will respect the policies and procedures of the Board.


Return to top


Board Procedure #NP460.0

School Grounds Enhancement Projects


The Board strives to provide school grounds that are safe, functional, maintainable and esthetically pleasing. This procedure outlines actions to be followed by Board staff while initiating, managing and maintaining projects for the enhancement of school grounds. School grounds enhancement projects provide increased educational opportunities related to the Ontario Curriculum; the encouragement of active and quiet play; spaces for rest/relaxation and sports activities; improvements to comfort, safety and esthetics; and/or contributions to greening and other environmentally friendly initiatives.


1. Definitions


1.1 Environmental Tributes

Environmental tributes are contributions allocated by the Board of Trustees to provide an expression of sympathy in memory of a staff member, student or immediate family member of a staff member or trustee who has died. The environmental tribute (a tree) will be planted on Board property at a location selected by Board staff, in accordance with existing plans for the enhancement of school grounds.


1.2 School Grounds Enhancement Plan

A school grounds enhancement plan outlines the design of all projects, existing or proposed, related to the grounds of the school. It includes graphical designs to illustrate positioning and information about funding, installation/planting, maintenance and removal.


1.3 School Grounds Enhancement Projects

School grounds enhancement projects are initiated by the school and may include, but are not limited to, greening initiatives, outdoor classrooms, and location of play structures. Shade structures, painted pavement games and athletic structures/areas for sports activities may also be considered, if the Assistant Manager, Maintenance has reviewed the project in conjunction with the School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee.


1.4 School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee

The School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee is comprised of the Manager, Energy and Environmental Services, and representatives from Plant Services, Curriculum and Instructional Services, Purchasing Services, Director’s Services, elementary principals, secondary principals, and the Board’s EcoTeam.


2. Responsibilities


2.1 The Director of Education shall:

  1. allocate staff and resources to support the School Grounds Enhancement Projects procedure.


2.2 Principals shall:

  1. notify the appropriate Assistant Manager, Maintenance of any planned school ground enhancement projects;

  2. coordinate, research and consult with the school community, staff and students, as necessary, to identify the components for enhancement of the school grounds;

  3. obtain a copy of the school site plan from the Assistant Manager, Maintenance to use as part of the application process to indicate the location of all site changes or enhancements;

  4. submit school grounds enhancement plans and related revisions electronically to the School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee for consideration;

  5. administer all funds and goods acquired for the purpose of school grounds enhancements in accordance with applicable Board policies and procedures;

  6. regularly maintain and identify any part of the school grounds that have become unsafe or otherwise unfit for use due to, overgrowth, damage, age, etc.;

  7. request any necessary maintenance or repairs through the Board’s Repair & Replacement (R&R) system;

  8. seek the approval of the Manager, Energy and Environmental Services, for any minor adjustments to the approved school grounds enhancement plan; and

  9. submit photographs of the completed projects to the School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee.


2.3 The Manager, Energy and Environmental Services shall:

  1. chair the School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee;

  2. notify principals who have submitted plans of the committee’s decision;

  3. retain copies of all approved plans on behalf of the committee; and

  4. review requests for adjustments to the approved school grounds enhancement plan.


2.4 The Assistant Manager, Maintenance shall:

  1. provide a current school site plan at the request of principal;

  2. assist the school principal with completing the application form; and

  3. present the submissions to the School Grounds Advisory Committee on the designated meeting dates.


2.5 Purchasing Services shall:

  1. assist in the acquisition of goods and services to support the school grounds enhancement plans.


2.6 The School Grounds Enhancement Projects Advisory Committee shall:

  1. develop and maintain an application form suitable for collecting school grounds enhancement plans, including;

    • site plan layout specifications,

    • planting/structure details,

    • implementation plans,

    • maintenance plans,

    • removal/disposal plans, and

    • financial implications;

  2. review applications for school grounds enhancements three times a year;

    • once in February (for plans received by January 31),

    • once in May (for plans received by April 30), and

    • once in November (for plans received by October 31);

  3. prepare written recommendations for each plan, to be shared with the principal;

  4. grant timeline extensions for approval if the plan needs to be refine based on special circumstances; and

  5. allocate Environmental tributes based on existing school grounds enhancement plans.


3. Related Policies and Procedures

Policy #270.0, Tributes

Procedure #NP459.0, School Playstructures


4. Department

Plant Services


5. Procedure History

Approved June 2007

Revised May 2008

Working Document January 2013 Revised June 2013