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Year 7 parents need to let go

(33 Posts)
Angelicinnocent Thu 12-Oct-17 18:57:31

We live quite rurally and about a third of the children at our secondary school get dropped off by car in a morning (around 450), the rest either walk as they live locally or get the bus. So many get dropped off because the bus from the villages in one direction would need them at the bus stop for 6.45 and at school at 7.30. Next bus is 2 hours later.

Less get picked up as there is a well timed bus that goes to many of the villages.

There isn't a car park at the school, just a circular drive through area and everyone drives in, stops at the kerb for a moment to let the children out and then goes on their way. There is room for about 10 cars at a time and since people space their arrivals over about 30 minutes, it works.

First couple of days of term, we always get a glut of new year 7 parents who wait to see their child go through the school doors before they drive off but we've all been there and had that "oh it's big school" moment so nobody minds and by the second week it's back to normal.

This year however, we have a group of 8 or 9 year 7 parents parking their cars in the drop off area and walking their child to the gate then making them wait until the others turn up. They then send all the children through the gate together and stand watching until they get through the doors.

The children look embarrassed and some of them try to go straight in but the parents won't let them. In the meantime, over half of the spaces for people to drop off children are taken up by these parents.

School have sent texts and a letter out telling people they can't park there but to no avail.

Aibu to think that it's over a month into the term, it's time these parents loosened the apron strings.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Thu 12-Oct-17 19:02:24

You parent how you want to and leave others to do the same.

Allthebestnamesareused Thu 12-Oct-17 19:04:18

If the school considered it a problem then they would have a member of staff placed outside moving them on like at our school

Wolfiefan Thu 12-Oct-17 19:04:42

If school have a problem with it they need to speak directly to the parents who have parked and tell them to move on.
How they parent has nothing to do with you.

crazycanuck Thu 12-Oct-17 19:07:03

I always wonder about that expression about cutting the apron strings. Did people actually used to tie their children to them with strings attached to their apron?

Maplestaple Thu 12-Oct-17 19:08:53

I'd never do that to my DC, they need a couple of staff members out there moving them on.

AlexanderHamilton Thu 12-Oct-17 19:10:40

I guess you've never had an anxious child/bolter/school refuser?

Angelicinnocent Thu 12-Oct-17 19:16:25

Fair enough, it probably is unreasonable of me to say they should let the children have a bit of independence and not any of my business but I feel so sorry for some of them. While DD was getting out the car today, one asked if he could go because his friend was there and his mum said no, it isn't time yet.

Yes school could send someone to move them on but why should staff have to act as traffic wardens when school have asked everyone not to do it.

parietal Thu 12-Oct-17 19:19:57

I bet they think they aren’t parking because they are still in the car. You need no waiting signs. Are there prefects who can escort the yr 7s inside for a week? That might stop it

CamperVamp Thu 12-Oct-17 19:30:08

The school should have a travel
Plan. Why on earth aren't the school and / or parents lobbying for the bus company to run a bus at school time? Or the school to organise a school bus?

Without knowing the circumstances of the kids and parents involved it is hard to judge, but if there are no social / educational needs it does sound as if they are ridiculous.

Some oafish hooting?

Angelicinnocent Thu 12-Oct-17 19:51:20

Unfortunately camper like many other schools, the school is suffering a shortage of funds and a school bus would bite too deeply into the budget. The bus company is not interested in running a public bus at the right time.

Obviously I don't know if there are any SN issues or anxiety/refusal type issues but the children do seem to want to go in to school and are being made to wait by their parents.

It would be less of an issue if they we're just walking them in but some of the Cara are there for about 20 minutes which causes back logs for the rest of us dropping off.

hmcAsWas Thu 12-Oct-17 19:56:38

That does sound rather infuriating. I agree that a member of staff should be posted outside to move them along. Why respond to Maple's suggestion with "why should staff have to act as traffic wardens when school have asked everyone not to do it." ?
Do you want this resolved or don't you?

seven201 Thu 12-Oct-17 20:05:36

The school shouldn't have to but they should get someone to send them on their way for a week or so. Have you seen the video of a teacher being run over by an angry parent who wanted to park in the staff only car park? Madness.

Angelicinnocent Thu 12-Oct-17 20:07:13

HMC wasn't dismissing maples suggestion (apologies to maple if it seemed I was). I'm sure that is what will have to happen in the end but when staff are so overworked it seems really wrong that they should have to spend half an hour being traffic wardens when it's time they could use productively elsewhere or even in having the last 10 minutes peace they will get.

Of course I want it resolving but I know it will have to be resolved by school. I guess I've just come on for a moan and to wish that some people could be more considerate.

Archfarchnad Thu 12-Oct-17 20:26:34

@crazycanuck : totally off-topic, but the thing with apron strings came up recently for my work (I'm a translator). In the past - 19th century and before - small children would probably have all worn dresses, and they had strings of the same material going out from each side at about waist height - essentially a precursor of the later reins. The mother would hold these 'leading strings' to help the toddler walk and make sure s/he didn't run off. So you would 'cut' the apron strings at the point a toddler no longer needed that support/restriction.

More on-topic: of course it's the OP's concern how other parents parent if the actions of the few are messing up a working system for the majority.

raspberrysuicide Thu 12-Oct-17 20:36:26

This terms year 7 parents are waiting for them at the gates to come out of school !
Come off it nobody does that! Surely once you can stop doing the bloody school run it's a joyous occasion. You don't bloody turn up and wait like your kids are still in reception.

HarrietSchulenberg Thu 12-Oct-17 20:48:31

We have staff on duty at the front of our rural school to organise the vast number of school buses in and out in the morning and afternoon. If parents blocked the drop off Zone the staff would eventually have a word, but not before other parents would have had a few blasts of a horn.
Seriously, these parents do need to let go.

HarrietSchulenberg Thu 12-Oct-17 20:48:32

We have staff on duty at the front of our rural school to organise the vast number of school buses in and out in the morning and afternoon. If parents blocked the drop off Zone the staff would eventually have a word, but not before other parents would have had a few blasts of a horn.
Seriously, these parents do need to let go.

Ttbb Thu 12-Oct-17 20:51:00

That's really strange. I don't even remover anyone having parents do that when I was in year 3. Parents would leave you at the gate and you would walk in yourself. So weird.

AlexanderHamilton Thu 12-Oct-17 20:53:54

Public transport times can be annoying. Why have a bus that goes past two schools on the same road (large middle school & a high school) but make it so that the bus arrives either 45 mins early or 5 minutes late for school start time.

InspMorse Thu 12-Oct-17 20:53:56

The school needs to have someone on duty for a couple of weeks to move people on. Our school does this regularly to stop the same parents driving into the bus lay-bys when buses are due.

KrytensNanobots Thu 12-Oct-17 21:01:02

Year 7? That's high school and age 11 and 12.
I agree with you, that's too old to be getting them to school if they're capable of getting themselves there and back OK.
You mention rubbish buses though, maybe that's a factor? If you know the buses aren't very frequent then I don't blame them for taking them if they can.
Standing around and seeing them go in though is weird, that must be well cringeworthy for the kids!
I'd feel like a right lemon if I was doing that.
Parents who take their children when they could quite easily walk though, I do think they should be making their own way there.
DS1 is 15 next year, one of his friend's mums drops his friend off at the school gates and she picks him up too outside them. He could easily walk it. 15 - 20 minutes, maximum.

Angelicinnocent Thu 12-Oct-17 21:03:43

So it looks like it's a common problem then. Guess it will be sorted eventually but it seems such a waste of staff time and I still feel sorry for these children.

midsummabreak Thu 12-Oct-17 21:05:18

Can 450 parents lobby the bus company to get public bus on time in morning?
Would the local papers be interested? Local authorities- is there a community consultant that you and parents can start highlighting this lack of transport issue to?
It seems strange 450 childrean isnt enough numbers for a morning public bus run

midsummabreak Thu 12-Oct-17 21:11:36

Our schools have either 5mins parking zone or no waiting zone, and people have been booked and had to pay fines for getting out of the car, walking their child to inside school , which is over 5 mins.

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