gmhTODAY Fall 2021 October-December 2021 - Page 74

Caring for

KIDS

Crystal Han - Crystal Han is a freelance writer and artist . A San José State Graduate ; BFA , Animation / Illustration , she is currently working on two books . Her interests are as varied as her ability is vast , allowing her to cover a multitude of subjects in expert form . We at gmhTODAY are beneificiaries of her passion , talents and gifts .

‘ Tis The ( School ) Season ...

Time To Refresh Your Traffic Safety Skills !

Back-to-school season is mostly back to normal this year . Streets are congested with cars , kids are racing down sidewalks , and hurried parents are dropping their kids off before work . After over a year of distance learning , now is a good time to brush up on our traffic safety skills . Here are some key tips to keep you and your children safe this school year .

Walkers
One of the main things that Alex Hernandez , a crossing guard for Gilroy Unified School District , sees is distracted or hurried driving , which can pose a real threat to children walking to school . “ You never know how these people are thinking in the morning or when they pick their kids up . Their minds could be wandering or they could be on their cell phones , not paying attention , and if they don ’ t stop you could get hurt or hit by a car ,” he said . This is why it ’ s important to instruct your children to always walk on the sidewalk , only cross at intersections and crosswalks , and to wait for crossing guards to tell them when it ’ s okay to cross . It also helps to make eye-contact with drivers when crossing the street so that children know that the driver sees them .
Drivers
For drivers , patience and vigilance is key . “ At the beginning of the school year , parents are in a hurry to get to work and they ’ re either speeding by or they go through the pick-up area a little faster than normal and you have to tell them to slow down ,” Hernandez said .
Drivers should always stop for crossing guards holding up a sign , or in school zones where signs are flashing or blinking , and yield to pedestrians crossing the street . Don ’ t block the crosswalk when turning or stopping at a red light because it forces pedestrians to go around you , potentially putting them in the path of moving traffic . Children are often unpredictable , as Patricia Tice , transportation manager for Gilroy Unified School District , attested , “ Kids will be walking in between the buses , which is dangerous because cars can ’ t see you , or running across the street , not looking . They ’ ll have earphones in both ears walking down the streets or road tracks .”
A driver needs to keep a keen eye out around school zones and residential areas in the mornings and afternoons .
74 FALL 2021 gmhTODAY Magazine gmhtoday . com