Tuesday, February 03, 2009

A valid rant..

One street around my children's school is having resurfacing done. It is not something new to this year, it has been going on since last year. In fact, since middle of last term last year.
The school is in a square block, four streets around it. Parents know that there are only three streets available to park to drop off their children. On one of the streets, there is an un-manned crossing. That is because in the next block there is a busy road that not only supplies our Primary School with traffic, but also the local Secondary school.
People have been parking wherever they like. Up on the nature strips right up to the crossing. Yes, it is within the NO STANDING signed area. It is clearly marked. What else are people doing? They are parking right on the corners of the streets, on the curb.
Something that amazed me was when I seen a driving school instructor, obviously a parent dropping her child off, park right next to the NO STANDING SIGN. I mean, she even had to reverse park into the spot!
When we cross the non manned crossing, I make the kids stand behind me. I then put out my hand, from the curb, and I have trouble seeing past these cars that are left parked on the nature strip right up to the crossing.
Husband called the council last year twice. I called the council today. I spoke to the By Laws Department. They say that they have not many resoures people wise to man all schools. That they rotate the areas they work in. That they sit in their car, take images and write down number plates and send off fines.
Ok, I get it, they are understaffed, but what else can be done? It would take up to 3 days at least to receive a fine in the mail. That is three more days that kids and parents are at risk crossing the un manned crossing.
What is worse, when I spoke to a parent this morning, she said a child had been hit by a car last year and was taken to hospital.
Ok, I did say I was a very concerned parent, and that I am a nurse and I do not want anyone hit by a car. These people are just idiots, they are putting at risk the most precious children..it has made me angry.
I will see if the By Laws people come today. If nothing improves this week I will resort to something else. I have a plan.


Andrew said...

Oh dear, what can the plan be? Will we see Cazzie on a current affairs show?

Stace said...

People's selfishness and lack of consideration never fail to amaze me. I see it all the time here - I think Canberra must be one of the worst places in Australia for it!! Where we should have a group of civilised people working for the greater good of the country, instead we have people who routinely park in no-parking spaces, who speed and tailgate, who ignore the 40k school zones... It's as though people think that being in a car makes them immune, nobody can touch them in their little isolated carworld. I don't know how many times I've wanted to stop my scooter in the middle of the road, get off, and walk back to the person who was tailgating me and explain exactly why that's unsafe and the liklihood that they may be responsible for my death. lol =- sounds like the drivers around your school need similar "education".

Homo Escapeons said...

My suggestion is that you organise a dozen volunteers, talk to the Principal and tell him that you're going to put on the crossing patrol vests and go out there and do it yourselves.
Let him know that you are going to invite the media to help motivate the politicians...make him/her aware that this isn't going to slide.

A few people will always try to get away with as much as they can...others will copycat if they don't see any consequences.

It's sad, pathetic,and a potentially dangerous situation.

Mom said...

I love it when you have a plan. Something good is gonna happen soon.
Cazzie has a plan.

karisma said...

What really needs to be done here is provide some parking for parents and drop of zones for those not wanting to go into the school (no parking drop and run).

Our local school is even worse they have nowhere to park. The whole street in front of the school is supposedly "bus stop" on both sides of the road, it runs a whole block, however one rarely if ever sees a bus stop there! The bus actually stops right up on the corner.

We used to walk our kids to school but once we dropped our daughter off late in the pouring rain and pulled up in front for 2 seconds, no other car in sight, kids all safely in school, we got fined. I realise we should not have stopped there but the alternative was our child having to do what you do and dodge all the leaving cars around the corner in the pouring rain. Then run the block to school. Oh how I do not miss all that!

DB has this week announced he would like to go back there! He wants to see his old friends.

karisma said...

I like Homo Escapeons plan! Excellent! We did the walking school bus too when we did school! Walking other peoples kids along with our own so they had some parental back up for safety.

Mal's Team Gherkin said...

The problem with us people is that "we are stoopid"!!!

Is there something the school can do?

You GO, girl!!!

g-man said...

Excellent rant my dear. And apparantly well needed I might add.
Try and keep cool....G

Christine said...

Hi. Just stumbled upon your page. I like the idea of getting a bunch of parents involved. Maybe you can do a volunteer safety patrol thing that two parents work each day and scream at this idiots.

Good luck.

Jules said...

Good on you cazzie. I am amazed at the amount of people that actually drive their kids to school, even if they live a block away. Mine now walk 2.3km there and 2.3km back. They do nothing but benefit from it. And NZ has had a really full on approach to school road safety lately.

Call the cops.

Keshi said...

Caz go on Today Tonight :)


Middle Child said...

Alwer to you cazzie. My kids are nearly your age but I can remember feeling like this when the parents picking up kids would stand on the opposite side of the road and call their kids accross...Unbelievable...I always got out of my car, no matter how far away i had to park and walk down to them and walk back to the car...my observations were that it was more often the swanker looking cars and 4wdrives which caused the problems...had to do with an attitude of entitlement

Cazzie!!! said...

WOW! I am so impressed by everyone's comments and ideas re this rediculous and dangerous situation.
I spoke to the Principal, she said she is working as hard as she can to get children to ride bikes to school to reduce the numbers of cars in the streets surrounding the school.
That did not exactly go down well with me, or the parent who was with me at the time (We are both nurses). The reason is, that means there is a higher probability of a child being hit on the road by the "stoopids" who park illegaly. It does not curb the fact that people are putting our precious children at risk.
Touche' to Therese, she is right in saying that it is the parents with an attitude of "entitlement" that seem to be the offenders...the ones in swanker cars etc etc. Then again, I have a relatively brand new nice little Mazda, yet I park a street away and walk..using the non manned crossing and the manned one. Or womanned one, lol, it is a lolly pop lady afterall.
So, now I am gathering concerned smart parents who give a sh&t about this debarcle...and then I am going to get each of them to find 2 more people. So we will have a group to work together... first to the Principal again, then to the Council and the police (as Jules said, call the cops).
Andrew was not far off the mark when he said to go to a current affairs show..it sure was one of my desperate thoughts to get something done.
Don was right on the ball too, we may be, as a group, if all works well, going to man the crossing ourselves...I have reflective vests here already from hubbies fork lift work. We'd have to make a roster and a phone call list in case someone could not do it. Because I work I could not do it every day.
The other thing is, thee is no shortage of people out there looking for work..I mean, the mum's who have all their children at school and are on benefits are being made o go back to work..so why not for 2 hours a day to man a crossing? Enough time to do other things in between those hours for sure.
I'll update everyone soon :)

A Slice of Life said...

I'm so glad you are doing something to fix the problem instead of just grumbling about it as so many people do. It amazes me that *parents* are the ones causing this problem!