Safe School Dismissal is in the CARDS

One of the tasks I dread most is picking up my kids from school.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t want to see them and hear about their day.  It’s that I have to deal with other parents who seem to think the world revolves around them and their need to get out of the parking lot first.  I’ve seen parents act like crazed lunatics by speeding, weaving around cars and driving through the grass just so they can be the first ones out of the parking lot.  Seriously, isn’t the safety of your kids (not to mention the example you are setting as a driver) more important than whether you get home five minutes sooner?

Fortunately, Yakko’s elementary school has started a program for dismissing students at the end of the day.  They refer to it as the Careful and Rapid Dismissal System (CARDS).  Click here for the actual instructions but in a nut shell, they have specific dismissal procedures for students walking home, students being picked up and students who ride the bus.  All families receive a specific number for their students and are given cards with that number that parents display in their vehicle.  Students being picked-up are gathered in the gym.  When the parents arrive, a person standing outside calls in the number and the students then come outside and are helped by staff into the vehicle.  It’s like valet for your kids!  The students who walk home are sent out specific doors of the school based on where they live so that they don’t have to cross in front of any cars picking up students.  It is a very safe, efficient way to dismiss students.  And as an added bonus, the dismissal procedure also doubles as their emergency plan if they need to quickly dismiss students to parents.  Now they practice their emergency plan every day!  Kudos to the staff for recognizing the issue and creating a solution.

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