Back to school means return to driving safety

Posted: Sunday, August 14, 2005

Despite the recent sunny skies and warm temperatures, our brief Alaska summer is rapidly nearing its end. And nobody knows this better than our area's school children, most of whom are looking forward to the first day of school with the usual mix of excitement and dread.

In today's Clarion, you'll find our annual Back to School section, which contains much of the information both parents and kids will need to know heading into the fall. Included in the section is information on bus routes, school calendars, lunch menus and even a few helpful hints on making this school year a productive and happy one.

With school soon starting up, this also is a good time to remind motorists to pay close attention to the road in the coming weeks. Children will soon be walking to school and standing at bus stops, meaning drivers must be extra vigilant and careful. School speed zones may not get much attention during the summer, but once school starts, motorists need to make sure to slow down in areas where children might be present.

Also, keep an eye out for school buses and always yield to flashing lights. Passing a school bus with its lights flashing is both dangerous and illegal, and is one of those things you simply should never even consider. No appointment is so important as to risk the life of a child.

Parents also have a responsibility to keep their kids safe. If you've got children walking to school or the bus stop, talk to them about basic safety rules. Kids staying clear of traffic and looking both ways before crossing the street will go a long way toward ensuring another successful school year here on the peninsula.

Keeping an eye out for our children is the responsibility of the entire community. By remembering that kids are more likely to be near the roadway, we can help ensure that the youth of our community have a safe and productive school year.

School starts Aug. 22, a Monday this year, in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District. We hope all students have a safe and productive year.

As writer Lewis Carroll might put it, O Frabjous Day! The new energy law will extend daylight-saving time one month, starting it in late March and ending it in early November.

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