Let’s Enjoy a Safe School Year!

Sometimes in the hustle of getting children off to school and yourself off to work or to attend to other matters, we take shortcuts that could place our children in an unsafe situation. The first days of school are an important time to impress upon adults and children that safety to and from school is critical. Here are a number of recommendations and requirements for helping ensure the safety of our kids.

  • Slow down on the roads and put your cellphones down (good tip whether you are driving or walking).
  • Always cross Burton, Godfrey, Burlingame and Chicago Drive at the crosswalks when signaled to cross.
  • Always follow the instructions of the adult crossing guards. granville
  • Allow yourself enough time to patiently drop off your child at school; remember that on the first days of school there is usually a lot more car traffic dropping off students than normal.
  • Do not park in the drop off or traffic lanes and run into school with your child; always park in a designated parking space.
  • Be sure your child understands not to approach a suspicious vehicle or accept a ride from a stranger.
  • Always walk on sidewalks, not in the streets.
  • If riding a bicycle to school, use the sidewalks whenever possible, obey the rules of the road, and wear a helmet; be sure your child has a lock for their bike.
  • Drivers MUST stop for any flashing RED lights on school buses and drive carefully around any schools. flickr-school-bus
  • Drivers should always be looking out for crossing guards before and after school hours.
  • Walk the school route with your child; share this responsibility with neighboring parents who also have children walking to school.
  • If your child is riding the school bus, be sure at least one parent is supervising the bus stop.
  • Children should wear light-colored clothing in the mornings as they walk or ride their bike to school; they should NOT be wearing headphones or earbuds and doing anything that distracts them from paying attention to traffic.
  • Students driving to school are to follow all traffic regulations and park only in designated locations.
  • Parents must ensure your child is riding properly in your vehicle according to Michigan state law:
    • Children younger than age 4 to ride in a car seat in the rear seat if the vehicle has a rear seat. If all available rear seats are occupied by children under 4, then a child under 4 may ride in a car seat in the front seat. A child in a rear-facing car seat may only ride in the front seat if the airbag is turned off.
    • Children are to be properly buckled in a car seat or booster seat until they are 8 years old OR 4-feet-9-inches tall. Children must ride in a seat until they reach the age requirement OR the height requirement, whichever comes first.

Remember also that being in school on time every day is very important for the education of your child. Because we are concerned any time a child does not show up for school, be sure that you call the office for any absence and also provide the reason.


About David Britten

Retired U.S. Army Officer, former elementary, middle and high school principal, currently serving as a public school superintendent.
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