Parents should not neglect morning drop off rules

October 18, 2010 — by Aasim Naqvi

It’s 7:55 a.m., and you’re in the back of the line at the front of the school. You can’t get anywhere because half the cars in line are either stopped and unloading passengers or turning every which way to park in a parking spot before unloading passengers.

Many parents have decided to make the bad habit of dropping their students in ways other than waiting in line and instead choose to break rules. Students are now often dropped off in the middle of the parking lot, presumably so that the parents can avoid waiting in line for several minutes. This usually entails the parent parking in a parking space before the student hops out.

The result? Parents who wait in line now are at an disadvantage time-wise. Additionally, the drivers who are actually following the rules now have to wait even longer to get to the front of the line. As if this is not enough, many parents also drop off their kids along the no-stopping-anytime curb on Saratoga-Sunnyvale Road.

There is a certain way that the school’s morning arrivals should play out, and it doesn’t entail breaking numerous parking rules.

Beyond the fact that these bad habits waste time, they are extremely unsafe. Cars that can’t find parking spots are aimlessly roaming the parking lot, and students have reported almost being run over by parents. Accidents happen when a vehicle is in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Perhaps the biggest challenge with the parking lot issue is that the rules are difficult to enforce. A school authority can warn the parent, but it is difficult to take serious action, especially since doing so would probably entail making the parent’s student(s) tardy. For an issue like this that doesn’t want to go away, the school really should do everything in its power to stop the problem.

Even with these difficulties, though, the school’s traffic commission should become involved in scouting for this specific problem every morning. Since it is currently easy to cheat the system, traffic commission’s vigilance in directing traffic and warning parents about their violations is vital.

The other maddening result of this problem is that students who drive to school are having trouble parking. A parent temporarily occupying a spot to drop off his/her student can result in the need for driving students to look for another open spot farther from school.

All these bad parking habits can slow down numerous students in their rush to get to class on time. The issue is a safety hazard, hinders the school’s morning progress and contributes to other bad habits such as students being tardy.

Parents should realize that saving a minute or two for one student by breaking a school rule isn’t worth slowing down everyone else in the parking lot.