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Siblings walking to school without adult

(13 Posts)
welcometomylife Mon 23-May-16 09:57:34

Anyone have any experience of dealing with a school demand that KS1 kids be taken to school by a responsible adult, rather than walking up in a group with KS2 siblings? Many thanks

bigmouthstrikesagain Mon 23-May-16 10:02:57

KS! Children in our primary aren't allowed to go to school with or be picked up by KS2 siblings. They can walk alone from summer term of year 4. It is standard practice for children to walk unaccompanied from end of year 4 onward in my area. The safeguarding policy for your school will set out expectations for dropping off and picking up pupils see if you can look at that - it should be on the school website but if it isn't you can ask at reception to see it as they will have it on file in the school office.

amidawish Mon 23-May-16 11:01:57

at our school you are allowed to walk home unaccompanied from the summer of year 5.
anyone younger than that has to be collected by someone aged 13+
so before Easter, a child in year 5 cannot walk home with a sibling in year 6, or even with a sibling from the nearby secondary school unless they are year 9 or above.

merlottime Mon 23-May-16 11:04:22

In our primary it is only Year 6 children who are allowed to walk home without an adult.

shouldwestayorshouldwego Mon 23-May-16 11:15:03

Only yr 6 children here too. They're old enough to look after themselves but not a KS1 child. I have one of each and I wouldn't like to give her the responsibility (although she is very sensible) in case something happens to him. She adores her brother and she would always feel bad if he got hurt.

DontDeadOpenInside Mon 23-May-16 11:15:32

Our junior school allow any aged child to walk home alone. Dd y3, ds y4 and ds y5 walk there and back together. In the infants school you have to be aged at least 13 to collect a child from school and there has to be a letter of consent from the parent to the head, not everytime, just in the first instance so they know that's it's ok. My teens have got themselves to and from school since they were both at the junior school together y3 and y4. I walked the oldest down whilst she was there on her own in y3.

BadMum1705 Mon 23-May-16 11:15:53

Really?? I've seen year 3 children walking home alone before. I didn't know schools had policies in this, will have a look on schools web page.

LemonBreeland Mon 23-May-16 11:17:43

School can have any policy they want, but they can't stop you doing what you want. Picking up is an issue if they will only release the child to a parent, but walking to school you can do what you want and they can't stop you, because the responsibility is yours.

amidawish Mon 23-May-16 11:19:43

yes our policy does explicitly say "walk home"
i guess the school are not responsible for how the children get there, but they are responsible for "releasing" them to a responsible adult.

welcometomylife Tue 24-May-16 15:08:08

yep - I am interested in the walking TO school issue. Just because the rules - which seem quite standard - deem it unsuitable for KS1 children to walk home alone or with siblings, does that mean that parents should not be able to use their own judgement re decisions about their children's arrangements for walking TO school?

shouldwestayorshouldwego Tue 24-May-16 16:04:04

I think that the issue might be that they might raise it as a safeguarding issue, esp if they had other concerns. I think that it might also depend on whether you were talking about an old year 2 or a yr r or young yr1. At 7 nearly 8 with an 11 yr sibling and if it was a 5 min walk with no roads to cross they might be more willing to accept it than if it is a 5yr old with an 8yr old walking 20mins.

Saracen Wed 25-May-16 07:01:21

The school cannot refuse to allow children to leave without being collected by an adult. They are not in loco parentis outside of school hours and it is not for them to dictate about parents' arrangements for children going to and from school. It would be wise for the school to ensure there is clarity about whether an individual child is to be allowed to leave alone, with an older child etc - staff shouldn't have to rely on young children saying, "it's okay, my parents told me to go home alone". Parents who want to make arrangements which are at variance with the school's usual expectation can write a letter telling the school about this.

This applies both to younger children who are to be allowed to leave alone and to any older ones who are more vulnerable than their peers and must be handed over to an adult even though others their age make their own way home. The school should have been more explicit about this.

Saracen Wed 25-May-16 07:04:49

As shouldwestay observes, if the school staff believe that parents' arrangements are clearly dangerous and parents cannot be persuaded to change them, they ought to contact Social Services. I doubt SS would take an interest except in extreme cases.

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