How to keep kids safe en route to school
Look at this photograph in today's Washington Post. This should never happen.
Kids should not be forced to walk alone on a busy street, huddled together for safety.
This happened because school started in the greater Washington region even though all the sidewalks and streets were not completely plowed after a historic snowfall.
After a week of snow days, I agree that it was untenable to keep the schools closed much longer. But all the same, students shouldn’t have been forced onto dangerous roads to get there.
Here's one part of the solution: Every principal should create and dispatch a team of adults to the feeder streets around the school to help children who are walking get to the building safely. If teachers need staff inside the school building preparing for the day, then citizen volunteers can be sought; after all, many of them answered pleas to shovel snow so schools could open.
This would be an adult version of the School Safety Patrols that some schools have now, which empower kids to help others navigate streets. (This is something Bill Clinton and I have in common: He was a member of his school patrol, and I was a member of mine). When the snow finally melts, more schools could consider implementing student patrols, or using a combination of adults and students.
Furthermore, school officials and/or the PTAs at each school should organize a group of parents to shovel the sidewalks on the way to school. They could do this in just a few hours.
We've been lucky so far that nobody has yet been hurt. That isn’t a reason to keep gambling.
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Posted by: danbiddell | February 17, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: JamesChristian | February 17, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: sideswiththekids | February 18, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse
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