September 4, 2016
by Mrs Francis
Dear Parents and Carers (School and Nursery),
Safety Issues and Parking around School and Nursery and planned Improvements
As indicated at the end of our previous school term, we have been working with our Parent Council to address some safety concerns in and around our school and nursery. This letter is applicable to both nursery and school families.
We have had a visit from Health and Safety NLC personnel and a Safe and Sustainable Travel Officer to discuss our current concerns and ways in which our council can make adjustments to the current arrangements within our parking and playground space.
I wish to inform you about some important changes to our car park arrangements which will include parents and carers bringing their child to nursery. PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING:
NURSERY: Adaptations to include the admission of 2 year olds
This year (date unavailable at present) our Nursery will be adapted and restructured in order to be able to include 2 year old children. This will involve restructuring on the inside of our nursery and adaptations to the outside play area of our children. When this happens, we will write to you regarding any changes that this may bring whilst the work is being undertaken.
However, in the meantime, there will be a tall fence erected just behind the bins at the nursery and it will section off the grass towards the perimeter nursery wall. This will mean that no walking access is available to the nursery gates past the grass/hill area. This will allow safe and uninterrupted play on the grass area for our young nursery learners. What this means for our parents and carers is that the main fenced nursery walkway must be used when taking your child to nursery and when collecting your child from nursery. This walkway was created for the purpose of safe and accessible walking to ensure that no parent/child needs to walk within or around the car park. Therefore, I must stress that the car park is not allowed for nursery or school drop offs. The church across the road from the school allows you to use its car park and you are welcome to use this and undertake a short walk from the church area to the nursery entrance or main school gates.
SCHOOL: Notification of Main Entrance to school and car park gate closures:
Signage will be put on the gates that allow access to the main playground (where football is played). We are asking that these gates be considered our Main School Access for children attending our primary school. If you are bringing your child to school by car please use these gates and the parking bays that are available (many parents currently use this as their main pick-up and drop-off points for meeting their children – thank you). Work on the pathway at our Main Gate is planned in the very near future. Our Janitor will secure this part of the school and close these main school gates at approximately 3.15 p.m. after all parents and pupils having left our school building.
Any parent visiting the school during school hours is asked to park out with the car park and walk along the gated pathway towards the school office.
Playtime and Lunchtime Security Measures:
Whilst our children are playing in the yard at morning and lunch intervals, the gate from the car park to the school office entrance area will be closed and a member of our staff will be present there. Visitors to our school during morning or lunch play will be asked to wait until a member of the office or SMT comes and meets them. Also, work will be completed to secure a walk-way access for our children as they leave the dining hall exit and walk towards their playground. All visitors and parents to school must make themselves known to the office and visitors and parents are not permitted to be unaccompanied within any teaching areas.
Finally, I am sure that you will recognise how this will help security and safety for our young learners especially within the car park area. It is important that parents and carers are more mindful of the use of the school car park because it is there for staff members to safely park in their place of work and for the many deliveries and visitors to school that occur in any day of the week. The disabled bays are meant to be kept clear and are not extra spaces for parents. I do not wish to take further action like requesting a police presence, or by asking the janitor to close the main car park gates at specific times in the morning or before 3 p.m. I don’t believe this to be necessary as I know many parents choose safe places to park their car. I think that this awareness raising for our new nursery and school parents and to remind some that may have got into a habit of using the school car park for dropping off/picking up will help us to solve the concerns about safety and children in our car parking area.
Mrs M McGuigan