Back to school is a busy time of the year, and a big adjustment period for both kids and parents. If your children are headed back to school this fall, these tips will help you make sure they stay safe and sound on their way to and from the school grounds.
School bus safety
If your children are taking the bus to school this year, go over some essential bus safety tips with them before they head to campus. Children should reach the bus stop at least 5 minutes early and stand a couple of feet from the edge of the curb while waiting for the bus to make sure it doesn’t hit them. To limit the risk of falling, kids should wait until the bus is fully stopped before getting on or off.
Remind your kids that if they cross the road in front of the bus, they must be sure the bus driver can see them clearly. They should walk at least 10 feet in front of the school bus when crossing.
Exercise caution in school zones
School zones can be highly congested, especially at the beginning of the school year. If you’re driving your children to school, stay highly alert as you approach the campus. Keep an eye out for pedestrians, children on bicycles, and kids getting on and off buses. Always follow posted signs and pay close attention to crossing guards and drop-off protocols.
Advise your kids to be extra cautious of drivers when they’re outside of the school. Remind them to follow directions from crossing guards and only use designated crosswalks to cross the street.
Walking to school
If your children are walking to and from school this year, remind them that it may be challenging for drivers to see them in congested areas or on gloomy mornings. Consider buying your kids some brightly colored, reflective outerwear to help them stay visible to drivers.
Remind your kids to check in with you when they get home from school, so you know they’re safe and sound at the end of the day. You might even consider installing some video cameras and/or a keyless entry system so you receive an alert when they enter their unique door code to access the house after school. That way you never have to wonder whether they made it home safe.
Communication is key
There’s a lot that could potentially go wrong between your house and the schoolyard. To maintain your peace of mind, impress upon your children the importance of communicating with you about where they are.
Create a standard school day plan and have them contact you if this plan changes at all. Whether your child decides to go to a friend’s house after school or opts to walk home instead of taking the bus, it’s important that you know about it.
Adapting to a new routine and environment can be overwhelming for parents and students. Having conversations about the importance of safety and communication will undoubtedly help you and your kids maintain peace of mind throughout the school year.
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