Sunday, February 22, 2009

A modest suggestion to save chlildren's lives

NewsLanc inquired of the Lancaster Police Department concerning the recent lack of a well trained school crossing guard, if one is there at all, on Walnut Street in proximity to the Sacred Heart School and Reynolds Middle School. We received the following response from Officer M .Branner:

" ... I am in the process of attempting to make changes in the School Crossing Guard program, while this program has been in affect for over fifty years.,, We have great difficulty in finding and hiring qualified people to maintain approximately 30 intersections. In past years crossing guards received salary and benefits, now they are paid $13.47 but receive no benefits.

They only work one hour in the morning and one hour in the afternoon. During the summer they are expected to be available for special events.

I am working with our insurance carrier and training division to get more training for these employees...."

NewsLanc responded:

"May we suggest that a very viable solution to the traffic guard problem at all grammar, middle and high schools would be the purchase and distribution of the stand up portable signs in the middle of the cross paths with the message "State law - yield for pedestrians within cross walks."

We have seen such signs downtown and in front of the Country Day School.

All this requires is for someone to arrive early at the school to place the sign and someone to collect it once school begins and again to place and correct at school closing time.

The portable stand up signs are more effective than untrained and inexperienced adult guards. Drivers are alerted and warned. No confusion results."