Some of these kids live within walking distance. Some of them would ride the bus if their parents didn't bring them every day. My school isn't the only one. I live a few blocks from an elementary school and the same thing happens there every day. Our neighborhood is a typical suburban neighborhood. I'd say the crime rate is low. In the past ten years I can think of only one serious incident that involved students. Yet safety seems to be a major parental concern.
These are reasons I've heard from both parents and kids.
- Not safe to walk to school
- Don't want kids to be picked on by other kids on bus, on street....etc.
- Only time of the day we get to spend time together.
- It's too cold to walk.
- It's too hot to walk.
- It's too far to walk.
- I don't want my (son...daughter....child) standing around in the cold waiting for the bus.
- If I don't bring them, they won't go.
I don't have children so I don't feel comfortable giving parents advice on this but I was intrigued by this article called, Why I let my 9 year old ride the subway. There is a website that has sprung up along with it called, FreeRange kids.
As I walk my dog in the park and don't see any kids playing on the playground equipment or using the big grassy area for baseball or soccer, I wonder if we are being too protective? I can't imagine what my childhood would have been like if I had been limited to my house and yard. Much less rich, I expect.
[Image: Flickr: Creative Commons-Attribution: "Easter long weekend stuck in some traffic" (91RS); http://www.flickr.com/photos/digital1/453791799/]