The following is a letter from Vail Ranch Middle School Principal Kevin Groepper after two students suffered injuries in accidents Tuesday near the school.
As some of you may have heard two of our students were hit by cars Tuesday after school. Fortunately, they are both going to be OK. This incident brings to the forefront serious traffic and safety issues.
The first step is to educate and remind our students of their safety responsibilities. This includes wearing a helmet and obeying the traffic laws while riding a bike, not jaywalking across any street or the parking lot, even if the cars are stopped and most importantly be aware and careful whenever around cars. We will do our part at school with daily reminders via announcements as well as increasing supervision adjacent to campus. Please make sure you have a discussion as well with your children about these concerns.
Secondly, we the drivers bear a large part of this responsibility. I know that traffic around every school at drop off and pick up is challenging at best. Combined with parents' need to rush to work or rush to pick up kids at other schools this creates the potential for a terrible accident involving cars and kids. When driving around VRMS at these crowded times please make sure you follow these traffic rules.
- Do not make any u-turns in front of the school or over the center divider on Butterfield Stage.
- Do not make a u-turn around or under cut the cones at the main entrance (even if there are no other cars present) - these are there to keep traffic flowing as smoothly as possible.
- Do not encourage your kids to run across the street to or from your car - have them go to the nearest crosswalk.
- Do not let your kids out of the car while in the traffic lane; pull over to the curb first. Otherwise you are creating a traffic hazzard stopping in the lane as well as putting your own kids at risk from a car on your right.
- Do not use the bus loop for pick up or drop off.
- Follow the 25 MPH speed limit.
- And most importantly be patient while driving near VRMS and watch out for kids. It is our responsibility as drivers to follow these safety rules in order to make this area safe for our kids.
I know these are a lot of rules to be followed but failure to do so even once puts all of our kids at risk. We truly appreciate your cooperation in this matter and hope that we can all pitch in to make coming to school, or going home at night safe for everyone.