Author Topic: Enforcing car clown lifestyle -- parents banned from walking kids to school  (Read 32413 times)

slugline

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http://www.fox26houston.com/news/117783912-story

The principal of Bear Branch Elementary in Magnolia, Texas insists that students arrive/depart on a bus or by car. Constables have been hired to arrest parents that attempt to approach the school by foot.

No mention of bicycles in the story, though. . . .

beltim

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This can't possibly be legal.  Owning a car cannot be a requirement of public education.

Also, what would they possibly be able to arrest the parents for?  This is a lawsuit in the making.

Miss Piggy

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I'm quite certain that's the most ridiculous thing I've read today.

Vertical Mode

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Absolutely bonkers. What are they thinking?!

Cassie

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Someone needs to sue over this. so you live next to the school and need to drive your kid there. Are you kidding me?  What if you are a 1 car family and the person working takes the car to work or are poor and don't own a car, can't drive because you are disabled but you can still walk your kid (ie: blind).   Wrong on so many levels.   

StockBeard

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This is crazy. I had to read a couple times to confirm this wasn't a late April fools

MilesTeg

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How in the world can a principal effectively make a new law up? This has to be a joke.

Ahh, I see, they are calling it "trespassing" if a parent comes on school property.

Easy to solve: just don't walk on school property

AND in the meantime sue the shit out of the school district
« Last Edit: April 06, 2016, 06:15:22 PM by MilesTeg »

randymarsh

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This may be for real. At least until a parent with balls makes them back down.

My high school had a walking path in a corn/soybean field that went about half a mile out from the building. Where the path ended was right next to a couple houses. I heard the student who lived in one of those homes was told they couldn't walk to or from school.

meg_shannon

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But it's not trespassing when you park in the parking lot? I'm confused.

Almost all the kids are bussed at my daughter's new elementary school, even the ones who live across the street. There are no crossing guards. We walk or bike to school together as she's in kindergarten and too little to do so on her own (school policy and we have to cross a couple of roads). But they have no issue with us walking.

Vanguards and Lentils

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This can't possibly be legal.  Owning a car cannot be a requirement of public education.

Since the other option is to have their children bussed home, perhaps they will be able to claim it's legal. On the other hand, I know some school districts only allow children who live X distance away to use the bus, in which case, it does sound like they are demanding car ownership.

My guess is some administrator was stuck in the after-school traffic jam, noticed that yielding to a pedestrian cost them 3 extra seconds, and concluded that the pedestrians, not the cars, were the problem.

MrsDinero

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It sounds ridiculous but apparently the school is close to a highway.  To avoid waiting in the car line, parents were parking on the side/shoulder of the highway, walk up to the school to get their kids, and load the kids in the car along a busy highway. 

Vertical Mode

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This can't possibly be legal.  Owning a car cannot be a requirement of public education.

Since the other option is to have their children bussed home, perhaps they will be able to claim it's legal. On the other hand, I know some school districts only allow children who live X distance away to use the bus, in which case, it does sound like they are demanding car ownership.

My guess is some administrator was stuck in the after-school traffic jam, noticed that yielding to a pedestrian cost them 3 extra seconds, and concluded that the pedestrians, not the cars, were the problem.

You've touched on something that just might be the dubious strain of logic that this idea was based on. Perhaps they observed pedestrians and cars in the same space, and thought "that's unsafe! what if a pedestrian gets hit by a car!". In an effort to level the playing field and make sure that everyone had equal protection from cars, they deduced that everyone should just be required to show up in a vehicle. Still ridiculous, but at least well-intentioned.

And to see this story show up on National Walking Day, no less!

JAYSLOL

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This can't possibly be legal.  Owning a car cannot be a requirement of public education.

Since the other option is to have their children bussed home, perhaps they will be able to claim it's legal. On the other hand, I know some school districts only allow children who live X distance away to use the bus, in which case, it does sound like they are demanding car ownership.

My guess is some administrator was stuck in the after-school traffic jam, noticed that yielding to a pedestrian cost them 3 extra seconds, and concluded that the pedestrians, not the cars, were the problem.

You've touched on something that just might be the dubious strain of logic that this idea was based on. Perhaps they observed pedestrians and cars in the same space, and thought "that's unsafe! what if a pedestrian gets hit by a car!". In an effort to level the playing field and make sure that everyone had equal protection from cars, they deduced that everyone should just be required to show up in a vehicle. Still ridiculous, but at least well-intentioned.

And to see this story show up on National Walking Day, no less!

This is the dumbest thing i've heard in ages, and i think you are right that parents complained about the long pickup line and didn't like other parents walking up and getting ahead of them.  GOD FORBID A CAR ISN'T THE BEST WAY TO DO SOMETHING!  BAN EVERYTHING ELSE!  Or the school is worried that without a slow line of supervised cars picking up students one by one, there will be mass-chaos with parents and evil kidnappers running all over the school scooping up students left and right.

Donovan

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It sounds ridiculous but apparently the school is close to a highway.  To avoid waiting in the car line, parents were parking on the side/shoulder of the highway, walk up to the school to get their kids, and load the kids in the car along a busy highway.

Considering that they already have police present to enforce the new policy on school campus, wouldn't it be easier in this case to just have one of them sit over on that shoulder during the school let-out period and stop this specific dangerous activity rather than blanket banning all pedestrian access to the school?

NoStacheOhio

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It sounds ridiculous but apparently the school is close to a highway.  To avoid waiting in the car line, parents were parking on the side/shoulder of the highway, walk up to the school to get their kids, and load the kids in the car along a busy highway.

Considering that they already have police present to enforce the new policy on school campus, wouldn't it be easier in this case to just have one of them sit over on that shoulder during the school let-out period and stop this specific dangerous activity rather than blanket banning all pedestrian access to the school?

Yeah, that seems more like an assholes-in-cars problem than an assholes-on-foot problem.

I'd be pretty tempted to try to force an arrest. Granted, I'd also want to have a lawyer lined up ahead of time. Depending on how the trespassing ordinance is written, I'm not sure they can discriminate based on mode of transportation.

clarkfan1979

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Someone needs to sue over this. so you live next to the school and need to drive your kid there. Are you kidding me?  What if you are a 1 car family and the person working takes the car to work or are poor and don't own a car, can't drive because you are disabled but you can still walk your kid (ie: blind).   Wrong on so many levels.

This is a good point because if you live too close to the school, there is no bus pick-up. Maybe the kid who lives across the street has to walk 1/2 mile in the opposite direction to catch the bus.

marty998

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Someone needs to sue over this. so you live next to the school and need to drive your kid there. Are you kidding me?  What if you are a 1 car family and the person working takes the car to work or are poor and don't own a car, can't drive because you are disabled but you can still walk your kid (ie: blind).   Wrong on so many levels.

Do you not have parent/teacher associations at your schools? Where you can sit down with the school executives and talk issues through like rational adults? Why is the 1st option always to take legal action/litigation?

Taking the school to court just diverts resources/money away from teaching kids.

randymarsh

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Someone needs to sue over this. so you live next to the school and need to drive your kid there. Are you kidding me?  What if you are a 1 car family and the person working takes the car to work or are poor and don't own a car, can't drive because you are disabled but you can still walk your kid (ie: blind).   Wrong on so many levels.

Do you not have parent/teacher associations at your schools? Where you can sit down with the school executives and talk issues through like rational adults? Why is the 1st option always to take legal action/litigation?

Taking the school to court just diverts resources/money away from teaching kids.

I agree with your sentiment, but oftentimes school leaders aren't rational adults. My school banned athletes from practicing shirtless or in sports bras because it was too sexual (hello, when you're 16, even having clothes on sexual!). Parents met with the superintendent and board explaining that this was stupid. They didn't care.  Sure, you can vote those board members off eventually but are most parents going to launch such a campaign on a relatively minor issue?

With the walking to school situation, the article says parents are being threatened with arrest. That is the overreaction and a lawsuit is not unreasonable if someone actually gets arrested over this.

Some US school districts are still trying to promote religion in the classroom. They just do not get it until they are sued.

Hunny156

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I'm watching and waiting to see what happens with the elementary school in my subdivision.  Apparently the parents have been informed that children who are being picked up by a walking parent will have to wait 30 minutes after school ends to do walk ups.  This change is not scheduled to happen until the fall, but many parents are up in arms over it, and the principal seems unwilling to change the policy.

FYI, there is a big billboard across from the school (it's a subdivision still under development) that says "WALK YOUR CHILD TO SCHOOL!"  Whoops.

Central TX, just outside of Austin.

coolistdude

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My buddy worked for a school district. HR's job is to make sure that perceived stupidity don't cause legal to be needed. Legal's job is to make sure that perceived stupidity doesn't cost the school money. This is a double fail. Some people just do not understand unintended consequences or are too selfish to care.

A school near me made a completely boneheaded decision by completely trusting a sleazy vendor. They wasted over $600k and risked going broke. Sometimes it's work politics, sometimes it is just selfish uh-holes wanting to show control, and sometimes it is just someone with a cousin working in a related business. Sometimes the story of an employee or low level manager who resisted a terrible decision and was shut down by senior management is not included in the news.

MgoSam

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Some US school districts are still trying to promote religion in the classroom. They just do not get it until they are sued.

And then they go complain and say that their rights are being trampled and that no one complained, it was only an outsider that came in and stirred up trouble....

TheGrimSqueaker

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

MgoSam

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I would like to see the principal's explanation. It's possible that she has messed up horribly, but perhaps there is a valid reason for this. I don't know if there is but I believe in trying to hear both sides out before judging, although I highly doubt there is.

According to this the principal has removed the bicycle stand.
http://www.treehugger.com/culture/texas-school-clashes-parents-over-bizarre-anti-pedestrian-pickup-policy.html

WerKater

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I would like to see the principal's explanation. It's possible that she has messed up horribly, but perhaps there is a valid reason for this.
I'm usually all for hearing both sides of any dispute. But in this case, I'll just say that it is bloody unlikely that there is a valid reason. Of course, I find the whole notion that parents should bring their children to school insane. Back in my day (and I'm 32...), if your parents brought you to school, you were considered a complete wimp.

Also, from the article you cited:
Quote
The school issued a statement on April 6, saying that the car line takes only 30 minutes
[Emphasis mine]

Holy crap, the school considers it normal for people wait in a 30 minute traffic jam to pick up their children from school? What the fuck is wrong with people? Again, back in my day (yeah, I'm still just 32), people would have come for the principal with torches and pitchforks just for that statement!

And, on second thought: One thing I am not quite getting (probably due to my happy ignorance; I am not quite sure I want to hear the answer):
(From the article)
Quote
The goal is a safe dismissal process. [...] The principal [...] refuses even to adjust the policy to allow walkers to leave prior to the start of the car line
What is that supposed to mean? Does the school hold students against their will after school is out until they have been picked up? Is there an actual queue of cars moving towards a designated "dismissal" point and that process takes 30min? If yes: Is this normal at American schools?

MgoSam

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Yeah the situation is baffling to me. The only thing I can think of is...it's Texas*.



*I apologize to my level-headed friends from Texas

MrsDinero

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Apparently this is becoming the new normal.

This story has been HUGE on my facebook news feed and I honestly had no idea what a problem picking up kids after school can be.

Apparently this procedure is being considered by a couple of of schools  my friends send their kids to.

They described the situation at their schools, the car lane and it sounds ridiculous.  The set up all seems to be the same.

Example:  The school is reached by turning off a busy road onto SchoolHouse RD (made up name).  Schoolhouse RD leads directly to the car/bus pickup area, but is about 1/2 mile to 1 mile long.  It is also a 2 lane road for flow. In order to get a "good spot" you have to arrive at least 30 minutes before school gets out, otherwise it can take 30-45 to get from the busy street to the front where the kids are waiting in the car waiting lane.  Police patrol the busy street to prevent parents from parking and walking up to the school door and walking back.

For walk home kids, they wait in the gym or cafeteria and the parents have to go there to check them out and walk home with them.  Kids are not allowed to walk home by themselves until grade 6 (age 11-12'ish).

It sounds crazy, but this seems to be the new normal in the suburbs where my friends live.  It is things like this that make me glad to live in a rural area.  It is not uncommon to see kids walking a mile or 2 home after school (usually in kid groups).




Miss Piggy

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Are you kidding me?

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

maustache

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Unfortunately, this is getting to be normal.  We bought a house 5 years ago, one big reason was  because it was walking distance to the centrally located, historic middle school and biking distance to the elementary school. After our first year the middle school was closed (supposedly too costly to maintain) and moved to a piece of land next to a cemetery on the outskirts of town to "save money".  Unfortunately, it was too "expensive" to add sidewalks so walking was banned and busing offered to all students - even those across the street. Even though most of the traffic on this road is due to employees at the school and parents dropping off and there are plenty of alternate routes for other drivers.

Normal bus rides can be 45-50 minutes long each way (we're fortunate to have a 25 minute ride one way and 40 the other) and even longer if there are problems because - surprise - it's hard to find enough bus drivers.  Sometimes buses double up and kids are sitting on the floor. I've suggested something like the Italy ZTL's where traffic is limited to low-speed, one lane for pickups and dropoffs only that time of day, but have pretty much been ignored.


WerKater

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Example:  The school is reached by turning off a busy road onto SchoolHouse RD (made up name).  Schoolhouse RD leads directly to the car/bus pickup area, but is about 1/2 mile to 1 mile long.  It is also a 2 lane road for flow. In order to get a "good spot" you have to arrive at least 30 minutes before school gets out, otherwise it can take 30-45 to get from the busy street to the front where the kids are waiting in the car waiting lane.  Police patrol the busy street to prevent parents from parking and walking up to the school door and walking back.

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

I would love to answer something smart. But I can't, since I simply can't stop laughing hysterically :-D These must be among the most ridiculous things I have ever imagined in my life. I would almost like to believe that there is some evil mastermind behind this who wants to make people waste their precious lifetime and also to make their children weak because they can't walk or bike for a bit.

We might actually be observing the end of the era of the US as the sole Hyperpower in the world here. One day, the US military will send troops into some country where they will be ambushed waiting somewhere because they thought their parents would pick them up but never showed.



onlykelsey

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Example:  The school is reached by turning off a busy road onto SchoolHouse RD (made up name).  Schoolhouse RD leads directly to the car/bus pickup area, but is about 1/2 mile to 1 mile long.  It is also a 2 lane road for flow. In order to get a "good spot" you have to arrive at least 30 minutes before school gets out, otherwise it can take 30-45 to get from the busy street to the front where the kids are waiting in the car waiting lane.  Police patrol the busy street to prevent parents from parking and walking up to the school door and walking back.

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

I would love to answer something smart. But I can't, since I simply can't stop laughing hysterically :-D These must be among the most ridiculous things I have ever imagined in my life. I would almost like to believe that there is some evil mastermind behind this who wants to make people waste their precious lifetime and also to make their children weak because they can't walk or bike for a bit.

We might actually be observing the end of the era of the US as the sole Hyperpower in the world here. One day, the US military will send troops into some country where they will be ambushed waiting somewhere because they thought their parents would pick them up but never showed.


Definitely strange and sad.

I will say, though, American teenagers are expected to be more financially independent than their Western European equivalents (based on my time living in Sweden/having Swedish family, living in Copenhagen, and being a high school exchange student in Germany, at least).  I had a job (maybe 8 or 10 hours a week at first) starting at 12 and have never really stopped.  Maybe the Kindergeld and equivalent in other countries changed that expectation, buy I found it strange.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2016, 12:15:20 PM by onlykelsey »

TheGrimSqueaker

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Definitely strange and sad.

I will say, though, American teenagers are expected to be financially independent than their Western European equivalents (based on my time living in Sweden/having Swedish family, living in Copenhagen, and being a high school exchange student in Germany, at least).  I had a job (maybe 8 or 10 hours a week at first) starting at 12 and have never really stopped.  Maybe the Kindergeld and equivalent in other countries changed that expectation, buy I found it strange.

Financially independent? Perhaps in some districts, but not others. Many states restrict job opportunities to the under-18 set. Teens are definitely expected to have and spend money, though. In fact it's safe to say the pressure to consume never stops.

In the case of the unnecessary buses and door-to-door on-demand transit, the cost of the consumption is hidden from the consumer.

onlykelsey

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Definitely strange and sad.

I will say, though, American teenagers are expected to be financially independent than their Western European equivalents (based on my time living in Sweden/having Swedish family, living in Copenhagen, and being a high school exchange student in Germany, at least).  I had a job (maybe 8 or 10 hours a week at first) starting at 12 and have never really stopped.  Maybe the Kindergeld and equivalent in other countries changed that expectation, buy I found it strange.

Financially independent? Perhaps in some districts, but not others. Many states restrict job opportunities to the under-18 set. Teens are definitely expected to have and spend money, though. In fact it's safe to say the pressure to consume never stops.

In the case of the unnecessary buses and door-to-door on-demand transit, the cost of the consumption is hidden from the consumer.
Sorry, I meant to have the word "more" before financially independent, which would make the word "than" play an actual role in the sentence.  I'll edit.

I certainly wasn't financially independent at 12, but it seemed that the expectation in Western Europe is that parents will foot the bill for everything, including you going out with friends or shopping for clothing, even for 16 or 18 year olds.  Teenage-dom also seemed a bit longer there... I was finished college at 21 by the time some of my gymnasium  friends were starting.  Of course, this was ten years ago, and they don't have crushing student loan debt to worry about, so that may make sense.

Jack

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All of the shitheads who come up with these insane policies should be fired.

In reality, they should have solved the perceived problem by banning pick-ups by CAR!

onlykelsey

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All of the shitheads who come up with these insane policies should be fired.

In reality, they should have solved the perceived problem by banning pick-ups by CAR!

Texas is a weird place.  I lived directly across the street from an elementary school there (meaning the crosswalk dumped directly on to my yard, because sidewalks are for socialists??), and watched literally a half mile of cars queue to drop their kids off.  While their huge SUVs and trucks idled and pumped exhaust out at around 3 feet off the ground, the same place their precious childrens' faces are.  very very strange.

WerKater

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Definitely strange and sad.

I will say, though, American teenagers are expected to be financially independent than their Western European equivalents (based on my time living in Sweden/having Swedish family, living in Copenhagen, and being a high school exchange student in Germany, at least).  I had a job (maybe 8 or 10 hours a week at first) starting at 12 and have never really stopped.  Maybe the Kindergeld and equivalent in other countries changed that expectation, buy I found it strange.

Financially independent? Perhaps in some districts, but not others. Many states restrict job opportunities to the under-18 set. Teens are definitely expected to have and spend money, though. In fact it's safe to say the pressure to consume never stops.

In the case of the unnecessary buses and door-to-door on-demand transit, the cost of the consumption is hidden from the consumer.
Sorry, I meant to have the word "more" before financially independent, which would make the word "than" play an actual role in the sentence.  I'll edit.

I certainly wasn't financially independent at 12, but it seemed that the expectation in Western Europe is that parents will foot the bill for everything, including you going out with friends or shopping for clothing, even for 16 or 18 year olds.  Teenage-dom also seemed a bit longer there... I was finished college at 21 by the time some of my gymnasium  friends were starting.  Of course, this was ten years ago, and they don't have crushing student loan debt to worry about, so that may make sense.

The last part is certainly true. I finished school at 20, university at 25 and my PhD at 30. All of these would be incredibly old for American standards, yet roughly normal in Germany. But I had no debt at 26 and in fact a somewhat positive net worth. But this difference between America and Germany (I'm not sure it's true for all of europe) is probably a topic for another thread.

kite

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My hometown of 30,000 has had, in my 50 year  lifetime, 3 fatalities of children in the school dismissal line up.  Each was headed to a parent's car for pick up and run over by another parent or in one instance, backed over by her own father.  Among walkers, there were zero stranger abductions.  If they're going to ban something near schools, it should be cars.   
 

Eric222

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Are you kidding me?

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

Okay.  This blows my mind.  My parents had me walk to school at 5. 

That said, I wait with my kids at the bus stop because it is a busy street and my youngest is 4... I was thinking I could just start watching from the porch, then window, then just send them out the door next year.  I must be insane or an awful parent or something...

onlykelsey

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Are you kidding me?

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

Okay.  This blows my mind.  My parents had me walk to school at 5. 

That said, I wait with my kids at the bus stop because it is a busy street and my youngest is 4... I was thinking I could just start watching from the porch, then window, then just send them out the door next year.  I must be insane or an awful parent or something...

Yes.  You likely hate your children.  You monster.

slugline

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

I believe you can trace this back to the kidnapping and murder of Adam Walsh in the early 1980s:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Adam_Walsh

After the Walsh case became a national sensation, there was a cultural shift where parents grew hyper-sensitive to  "stranger danger" and hesitated to let children wander off unsupervised. Of course, statistics show that "stranger danger" is rare -- much rarer than the threat from people they actually know.

JustGettingStarted1980

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

I believe you can trace this back to the kidnapping and murder of Adam Walsh in the early 1980s:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Adam_Walsh

After the Walsh case became a national sensation, there was a cultural shift where parents grew hyper-sensitive to  "stranger danger" and hesitated to let children wander off unsupervised. Of course, statistics show that "stranger danger" is rare -- much rarer than the threat from people they actually know.


It's lawyers and fear of litigation that drives 80% of this fucking nonsense in this country. For example, I can't use my local high school soccer field to play a game unless I have $2 million in insurance for my team, in addition to paying field use fees. Oh, and they are installing a new field next month anyway, so no wear and tear bullshit excuses.

MrsDinero

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

I believe you can trace this back to the kidnapping and murder of Adam Walsh in the early 1980s:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Adam_Walsh

After the Walsh case became a national sensation, there was a cultural shift where parents grew hyper-sensitive to  "stranger danger" and hesitated to let children wander off unsupervised. Of course, statistics show that "stranger danger" is rare -- much rarer than the threat from people they actually know.

The latch-keys kids of the 80's have become the helicopter parents of today.

acroy

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For the $13k/student/yr thrown at 'education' you'd think limo service would be included.

We home-school and laugh.

rosaz

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Meh... I'm one of those parents who will probably be walking the lil' one to school until she's 9, even though it's only a third of a mile away (she's 6 at the moment). Even I completely trusted her judgment around cars (which I don't think I will for a while), I just feel like it would be unsafe until she's tall enough to be easily seen from a distance. The cars on the major road we cross every day have been known to run the red light, when we're in the crosswalk, going quite fast. Maybe I'm a helicopter mom but I think it's a legitimate fear.

Tabaxus

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Are you kidding me?

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

Okay.  This blows my mind.  My parents had me walk to school at 5. 

That said, I wait with my kids at the bus stop because it is a busy street and my youngest is 4... I was thinking I could just start watching from the porch, then window, then just send them out the door next year.  I must be insane or an awful parent or something...

I fear that if I ever have kids, I am going to be arrested and have the kids taken from me if I raise them the way that I was raised with respect to this kind of stuff.

Eric222

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Are you kidding me?

I live in a VERY safe suburb in the U.S. state of Missouri, and these days, kids don't even wait at the bus stop 20 meters from their front door without a parent present. It's quite odd.

Okay.  This blows my mind.  My parents had me walk to school at 5. 

That said, I wait with my kids at the bus stop because it is a busy street and my youngest is 4... I was thinking I could just start watching from the porch, then window, then just send them out the door next year.  I must be insane or an awful parent or something...

I fear that if I ever have kids, I am going to be arrested and have the kids taken from me if I raise them the way that I was raised with respect to this kind of stuff.

Being a 50% custody father, I'm mildly afraid their mother is going to find out... at times she personifies helicopter parent.  But custody agreements favor the status quo...so I'm okay. *crosses fingers*

SisterX

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I'm probably showing my non-American upbringing here, but I've got to ask: if the school is within walking distance, why are the parents involved at all? Shouldn't the children be walking themselves to school and back, starting at about age 5? If there's an actual issue with some of them dawdling or getting distracted, they can travel in packs and make better time.

Meh... I'm one of those parents who will probably be walking the lil' one to school until she's 9, even though it's only a third of a mile away (she's 6 at the moment). Even I completely trusted her judgment around cars (which I don't think I will for a while), I just feel like it would be unsafe until she's tall enough to be easily seen from a distance. The cars on the major road we cross every day have been known to run the red light, when we're in the crosswalk, going quite fast. Maybe I'm a helicopter mom but I think it's a legitimate fear.

It's not just being afraid of the awful drivers, though (which is totally legit - I'm a fully grown adult and I've been nearly hit by distracted/asshole/insane/entitled drivers more times than I can count), it's also the bonding time with the kiddo. I can imagine walking/biking my daughter to school in a few years and, hopefully, using that time to talk with her. What's she looking forward to that day at school, what happened that she liked the best (at the end of the day), etc. You just don't get that in the car, especially when you're stressed out and pissed off at wasting an hour of your day in a school-imposed traffic jam.

Tjat

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In my neighborhood, which is winding circle off the main road, the bus stops at the end of each student's driveway. Half of the time, the kid is waiting in their house and meanders over to the bus once they see it. The other half, mommy and snowflake are in their SUV that's idling at the end of the driveway. Bus pulls up, snowflake gets on, mommy reverses back towards the house. The longest driveway is maybe 50 yards. It's sickening.

JR

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Some US school districts are still trying to promote religion in the classroom. They just do not get it until they are sued.

I live in a school district that started teaching intelligent design in biology class (in 2004) and didn't relent until they spent millions in federal court defending it. This is a school district that does not have stellar test scores compared to other districts in the county. I guess as long as the kids have Jesus they don't need no book learnin'.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2016, 09:08:45 AM by JR »

cautiouspessimist

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In my neighborhood, which is winding circle off the main road, the bus stops at the end of each student's driveway. Half of the time, the kid is waiting in their house and meanders over to the bus once they see it. The other half, mommy and snowflake are in their SUV that's idling at the end of the driveway. Bus pulls up, snowflake gets on, mommy reverses back towards the house. The longest driveway is maybe 50 yards. It's sickening.

I may have whispered "WTF" after I managed to get my jaw off the floor. Holy carp the laziness...

Stache-O-Lantern

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I fear that if I ever have kids, I am going to be arrested and have the kids taken from me if I raise them the way that I was raised with respect to this kind of stuff.

I have a 2 yr old and I've had the same thought.  As he gets older, I think what i did as a child might now be considered criminal neglect on the part of the parents.  But it was wonderful.  Part of that might be that i grew up in a small town, and now live in a larger city.  But i do worry about my kid not being independent enough, or being able to explore sufficiently.  The attitudes of most adults has changed since i was young, and it seems to have changed fast.