I am writing to provide you with an update to the traffic management situation at school. Congestion at 8.45am and 3.15pm continues to be an ongoing challenge. The removal of free faith transport inevitably led to an increasing number of cars at these key times. As you will know the school is situated adjacent to the busy A691, which is the main road to link Durham and Consett; northbound vehicles must cross this highway to gain access to the school.
The school has a lack of on-site and no off-site parking, therefore I appreciate that evening pick-ups can be difficult for parents. However, parents do safely collect their children from the designated collection points within the school site. I acknowledge that this can at times cause delays, however, established management of traffic flow by my duty team means that this is a manageable waiting time. In addition, I also deploy staff to ensure that students are safe whilst on site waiting to be collected.
May I take this opportunity to encourage you to both drop off and collect your children from within the school site using the dedicated car lane. In doing so, you will be entering the slip road north and waiting in the car lane, allowing staff to manage your access and egress from the school site.
I am aware that students are often collected outside of school; often directly outside our boundary or from within the village/housing estates. I do appreciate that many parents have child care and car share arrangements and I can only ask and encourage you to collect your child from within our school site.
However, if you currently collect your child from an alternative location to the school, may I ask you to be sensitive to the needs of the local community and be mindful of vehicle access to homes and estates for local residents. Can I also request that you encourage your child to cross the highways at the established school crossing patrol areas.
As an Academy, we continue to negotiate with Go Northern to minimise the increase in costs of bus tickets and we have funded a “sibling” discount scheme to support our families. This will help reduce congestion.
Our priority is to support the safety of our school community on their journey to and from school but also to work in partnership with the Durham County Council, the community of Lanchester and of course our parents.
As always, I am very grateful for your ongoing support and I will continue to explore all options in an effort to improve the traffic management at our school.
Mr N Harrison