Prin­ci­pal fears ar­son­ist will tar­get school again

Western Leader - - OUT & ABOUT - TORIKA TOKALAU

An Auck­land prin­ci­pal fears van­dals who torched the school’s play­ground might re­turn.

Fruit­vale School’s ju­nior play­ground was burnt to the ground on Oc­to­ber 3, dur­ing the school hol­i­days.

A few weeks af­ter the in­ci­dent, another ar­son oc­curred at a nearby pri­vate prop­erty.

Act­ing school prin­ci­pal Hine Viskovich said they feared the school could be tar­geted again.

‘‘We worry that they would come back to the school,’’ Viskovich said.

It’s just ter­ri­ble that peo­ple tar­get chil­dren, and its tar­get­ing their own chil­dren in their own com­mu­nity and they’re the ones that are go­ing to suffe.’’

Plans were al­ready un­der­way for another ju­nior play­ground which would have a climb­ing frame with net­ting, crawl­ing tun­nel, climb­ing wall, slide and a fire­man’s pole.

The new play­ground would cost more than $22,000.

‘‘Even though it was quite sad at the be­gin­ning, we’ve turned it around into some­thing pos­i­tive,’’ she said.

‘‘We can cre­ate some­thing bet­ter than what was there.’’

Viskovich said the van­dals had ini­tially tried to start the fire on the turf.

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