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Parents call for lollipop patrol outside Brookside School in Bicester
PARENTS and staff have “grave” concerns about the safety of children at a Bicester primary school after a council ruled a lollipop person wasn’t needed.
Children at Brookside School have been without a person to help them across Bucknell Road since September, and one staff member has already had a near miss.
Problems in the area are exacerbated by parents who park to drop off and pick up children, and sometimes block driveways, or double park.
The school said Oxfordshire County Council had recently assessed the road and told it a lollipop person was not needed.
But staff and parents are so concerned they have launched a petition to lobby the council to reinstate the position.
Headteacher Nick Cornell said: “I am gravely concerned for the safety of our pupils crossing Bucknell Road without a crossing patrol warden.
“It is a dangerous road for children and I am disappointed Oxfordshire County Council feels it no longer warrants a crossing patrol.”
Parent Karen Lewis, 43, whose nine-year-old daughter Georgie goes to the school, said: “It’s a busy road and I’m concerned about people’s safety.
“It’s very dangerous, people are parking everywhere and you can see kids dodging in and out of parked cars.
“One of our teaching assistants was crossing and a car hadn’t seen her – the driver stopped in time, but the car touched her leg.
“We don’t want an accident to realise we do need someone.”
Tracey Matthews, who has two children at the school, said she had already lobbied the county council over the situation.
She said: “At school opening and closing times it is very busy.
“People park on both sides of the road so the traffic has to go single-file between the cars.
“There is no safe place at all to cross.
“ If you want to cross near to the school you have to cross between parked cars as the school markings outside of the school aren’t on both sides of the road.
“I believe that having a school crossing patrol helps to get children across to school safely and gives children road awareness.
“It also encourages drivers to slow down because they see a fluorescent jacket and slow down.”
Norman Bolster, Oxfordshire county councillor for Bicester South, said: “I will get on to the county council to get the facts and if possible get one reinstated.”
Oxfordshire County Council was unavailable for comment.