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Alum donates $60k for Woodbridge playground

By: Nathan Donato-Weinstein
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The Roseville City School District's oldest elementary school will receive a much-needed new playground, thanks to the generosity of a former student. School board members at their Feb. 7 meeting accepted a $60,000 donation from the Thomas E. Doyle Trust to benefit Woodbridge School, which will be used to start construction on a new kindergarten playground, officials said. Doyle, who died in 2003, was part of three generations of family members who led Roseville Telephone through its transformation into telecom powerhouse SureWest Communications. His wife, La Veda Doyle, was an original student of the school, which opened in 1935, and latched on to the idea of helping revamp the school's playground, officials said. Mrs. Doyle stepped forward and said, ˜I want to do this,' Principal Dave Phillips said. The new playground will feature a new play structures, a surrounding track and padded playing surfaces rather than a traditional bark box. That means it will be much friendlier to students with disabilities, Phillips said. It will also provide a play area just for kindergartners that's separate from higher-grade children at the K-3 school. Phillips said the new, modern facility would get quite a workout “ and not just during school time. Really, this side of Weber Park there's not another park, so the school playground gets a lot of use, he said. LaVeda Doyle isn't the only connection the family has to the school. Her daughter-in-law, Loretta Doyle, taught at Woodbridge for years, Phillips said, and her grandchildren went to school there, too. Construction is expected to begin at the end of this month or early March for a May completion. It's such an exciting thing for me to see an ex-student really giving back, Phillips said.