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Ring in the new school year with student safety in mind

Walking to school SRTS- crosswalk (1).jpeg
Red Cross Cascades Region
With the new school year starting, there will be lots more kids crossing streets to get to class. Everyone is urged to be super aware of their surroundings.

It’s back to school time across the region and that means lots more tots and teens coming and going. Here are some important tips to make sure students stay safe.

With the leisure days of summer behind us, students will be adapting to new routines. For those who walk or use wheels to get to school, parents should help them map out the safest route. The rules of the road always apply--wear a helmet and walk your wheels across the street.

Bike Education Class (1).jpeg
Red Cross Cascades Region
Kiddos will be out in force biking to school. They should know the rules of the road and drivers should slow way down in school zones and along the routes students take to get to class.

The American Red Cross Cascades Region issued these back-to- school safety tips. Spokesperson Dawn Johnson said it is really important that kids memorize a parent’s phone number in case of emergency. And she added, about those cell phones…

“For our older students who may be bringing their phones to school, talk to them a little bit about safety and about not texting or being distracted as you walk to school,” she said. “Put that phone away.”

school bus.jpeg
Eugene 4-J School District
When you see the flashing red lights and retractable stop sign on a school bus, that means students are getting on or off. It is the law for drivers to stop.

Johnson reminded drivers to fully stop for school buses with red flashing lights and the extended stop sign. And when on foot, always cross in front of a bus, never behind.

The old adage "don't talk to strangers" still holds true. Parents are urged to talk to their kids about what to do if approached by a stranger who tries to entice them into taking a ride. Always know who your student is walking to and from school with and stick to the afterschool plan. Johnson said a tracking app on your student's cell phone is a helpful way to confirm their location.

Students and parents should also be aware of their school’s emergency operations protocols. In the event of an evacuation, know ahead of time where your student would go and how to safely reunite.

Tiffany joined the KLCC News team in 2007. She studied journalism at the University of Missouri-Columbia and has worked in a variety of media including television and daily print news. For KLCC, Tiffany reports on health care, social justice and local/regional news. She has won awards from Oregon Associated Press, PRNDI, and Education Writers Association.