Readers — Here’s a success story from Plano, Texas!
We live about 200 yards from the school. Our block ends across the street from the front of the school. The crossing guard is one street over (on our same block, so no need for kids to cross a street). Yet, every single child on our block either had their parent walk them to school or stood outside their house until they could see their child walk into the school. Even our neighbors with fifth graders did this!
Under peer pressure, I did this while my oldest was in kindergarten and first grade. When my girls were in kindergarten and second grade, I got laid off. I admit it was laziness (I wasn’t dressed yet, because I wasn’t going to work) that finally made me act by my convictions and let the girls walk to school by themselves. Since I was unemployed, I took them out of the after-school program, and they started walking home from school by themselves as well.
At first, I thought all of my neighbors would be talking about what a slacker parent I was. Then a funny thing happened. All of the parents on our block started letting their kids walk to school by themselves. Another funny thing happened, the kids started walking together with other kids from our block. They started to actually get to know one another.
It’s funny to think that I was so worried that the other parents would think bad things about me for letting my girls walk to school by themselves, but it turns out they were all so relieved that they could finally let their kids walk by themselves!