A headteacher in Kent has sent a strongly-worded newsletter to ‘maniac’ parents, after the school caretaker reported seeing a spate of unsafe driving in the schoolyard.
Jim Holditch, head of Godinton Primary School in Ashford, says caretaker Peter Smith told him he’d seen a silver BMW ‘nearly take off as it went over speed bumps’ on the site, and stressed his concerns that a child could be knocked down if he didn’t take action.
In the letter, Mr Holditch stated: ‘We all know children don’t walk anywhere, they run. We also all know they run without looking or generally being aware of anything around them.’
‘We were really worried that it was only a matter of time before a child got knocked over by a car manoeuvring in the car park.’
‘But over the past few mornings, Mr Smith has seen cars obviously being driven by parents who are late for work, and consequently they have sped.’
‘What is the matter with some of you!?! This is a school.’
‘Even at 8am, there are children walking around the site, particularly now we have a nursery here as well as our own Breakfast Club.’
Mr Holditch is aware that parents may be in a rush, but says that there’s no excuse for dangerous driving.
‘If you’re late, tough. Get up earlier,’ he wrote. ‘Get yourself sorted. Or just arrive late at work. But don’t drive your car at any speed on this site.’ ‘If you drive like a maniac because you’re late for work, it will only be a matter of time before a child is hurt or, God help us, even worse.’
Reports from the local paper suggest that that parents have attributed poor parking facilities outside the school as contributing factors to the problem, but Mr Holditch says he has spent seven years trying to get parents to drive responsibly, and has invested several thousand pounds on barriers and speed bumps to slow them down, and that his newsletter was just the latest attempt in his campaign.