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Fence finale: North Bend Elementary security measure is complete
A new fence encloses the North Bend Elementary School playground and the grassy area behind it, since the start of the school year. The six-foot fence encompasses 109,000 square feet of school property, including the grassy area referred to as Claggett Field on some maps. Two gates, on the north and south ends, provide access to the field when school is not in session, but are closed and locked during school hours.
Total cost of the fence was $12,000.
The project was the result of a parents group raising concerns about children's safety on the playground last year. Although North Bend Elementary had not reported any incidents of endangered children, nor found any hazards such as used hypodermic needles on the property, the district agreed to fund the fence in the 2013-14 budget.
Another group of parents strenuously objected to the fence over the summer, saying it cut off access to a community park, and could prove more dangerous for children, such as in a disaster. Since the fence was installed, much of the controversy has died down, although some residents remain opposed to it. .