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Getting Home from School Safely: Tips to help kids be aware

September, 2016

We all know St. Albert to be a safe place to live. In fact, this is exactly the reason that many of us moved here to begin with. It’s a place our kids are free to play outside or to walk to and from school without fear. But accidents do happen, and risks are out there. It can be easy to forget, as RCMP reports indicate, that crimes like child abduction and similar types of incidents are not only rare in Canada but also on the decline. Danger isn’t lurking around every corner, but it never hurts to be prepared. Here are a few safety tips when it comes to getting your child to and from school without incident:

  • If you will be picking up your child from school directly, make sure that the staff of the school know who you are. It’s important to be visually recognised as your child’s legal guardian so that if a stranger (or even a relative) comes to collect your child, the staff will be able to confidently intervene. On that same note, if you ever ask someone else to pick up your child from school, make sure that you call the school in advance to let them know.
  • If your child is just starting out in school, or if your family is new to the area, it never hurts to walk to school with them to make sure they know the safest route. Your kids will forget the embarrassment, and you’ll rest easier because of it. The same rule applies for the safest route to the bus stop or in making sure that your child can correctly identify which bus he or she should take after school lets out for the day.
  • If the route home is long, talk to your child about where they can go or who they can approach in case of an emergency. Do they walk by the police station? Near a family friend? Make sure they can identify these safe spaces so that they know where to turn in a time of need.
  • Remember to always obey the posted speed limits in school zones, but don’t trust other drivers to do the same. Make sure your child learns to watch traffic and to cross the streets only when it is clear; even in a school zone.

For more resources on how to prepare yourself and your children for any situation, visit the Canada Safety Council’s website.

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