Date of Award


Document Status

Open Access

Degree Type


Degree Name

Occupational Therapy (M.S.)


Occupational Therapy


A local school district, Muskegon Public Schools, is restructuring due to budget constraints. Therapists at Muskegon Public Schools were concerned about the safety and accessibility of the current playgrounds. The purpose of this needs assessment was to determine if any of Muskegon Public Schools’ playgrounds met the students’ safety and accessibility needs. To determine this, the researchers created a checklist using the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Handbook on Public Playground Safety (1997) and the U.S. Access Board Summary of Accessibility Guidelines for Play Areas (2005). The checklist was then used to assess all nine Muskegon Public School playgrounds. None of the Muskegon Public School playgrounds met all the safety and accessibility requirements. A need exists to update the Muskegon Public School playgrounds to meet the current safety and accessibility requirements. Doing this will not only improve the safety of the playgrounds, but will promote an inclusive natural play environment for all Muskegon Public School students.