Pick-up and drop-off periods around schools are busy times with students walking, biking, scootering, being driven and riding the bus to get to and from school.
Create a better commute for students…
Be on the lookout
There are far more children on foot near schools than in most places drivers go; be alert and expect that students and other drivers may make decisions not normally expected.
Do something different
Reduce congestion and improve safety for students by using these alternatives to dropping students off right at the school door:
- Walk or bike to school – Walking and biking improves focus and engagement in class, increases health through greater physical activity, and offers opportunities for naturally graduated independence. Some studies even show improved test scores…and it’s fun!
- Go with friends or neighbours – Carpool or “walkpool” and enjoy social time on the way to school. By carpooling, the responsibility of driving is shared with other parents and the number of cars at the school site is reduced making it safer at the same time.
- Drive to 5 – Park just a five-minute walk away from the school to ease congestion at the school and get a few extra minutes of daily exercise. This short walk can be just what is needed before and after school!
Drive differently in the school zone
- Give pedestrians the right of way at crossings with crossing guards and Level II Pedestrian Crossovers, every time. It’s the law.
- Obey the posted school zone speed limit. It’s better that a child is late for class than to let speeding be the cause of an unfortunate accident or a speeding ticket.
- Whenever possible, make arrangements to have your children be dropped off and picked up a short distance from the school, instead of directly in front of the school where space is limited.
- Unless authorized, do not park or stop in the area designated for disabled persons. The two minutes you choose to stop there is likely the same two minutes that spot is needed by someone who can’t walk the distances you can.
- While not always illegal, turning around in a driveway, backing onto a roadway for any reason, u-turns and 3-point turns in a school area are potentially dangerous for student pedestrians who may not predict your movements and whom you may not see; consider taking a couple of extra minutes and drive around the block or out of the school area before changing directions.
- When you locate a legal parking/stopping spot, pull your vehicle fully toward the curb (within 30 cm or 12 inches), so that through traffic can pass you safely.