Anchorage School Board, Assembly to review how safe kids are walking to school
The Anchorage School Board and Anchorage Assembly are re-forming a task force to look at how safe students are when crossing busy intersections on their ways to and from schools throughout the Anchorage School District.
Areas around Mears Middle School, Service High School and Dimond High School top the list of priorities, according to school board president Starr Marsett.
The four-way intersection at 100th Avenue and Victor Road near Mears Middle School is especially troubling.
"We've had someone hit at the intersection at Mears, Victor and 100th,” said Marsett. “We've had an incident at Dimond where a student was hit so we just need to be, you know, people are in a hurry to get places. Maybe we need to look at our signage and just what else can we do to make sure our students are safe."
The concerns were enough for the school board and the assembly to agree to work together on a School Zone Safety Task Force committee.
Alaska PTA president-elect and Mears PTSA president April Eide says she’s seen firsthand how dangerous some areas can be.
"There’s 12 cars sitting at this four-way stop sign at school pickup. These kids are standing at the corner waiting, waiting, waiting. Nobody’s letting them cross except for the cars that’s right next to them because they are the only ones that see them."
Some areas are so hazardous, says Anchorage Assembly chair Felix Rivera, that kids who live within walking distance of their schools are required to ride the bus.
"We have students who live right across the street from the school, they have to take the bus to school because it’s not safe enough for them to just walk across the street," Rivera said. "That seems a little bit ridiculous to me."
The hope is that the task force will be in place before the start of the school year.
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