Path tops school agenda
Road safety is a major concern for parents at Baldivis Primary School and they are appealing to the Rockingham City Council to assist them in improving road access to the school grounds.
Parents and Citizens members are gathering signatures for a petition requesting the installation of a footpath along Eighty Road for students and families to use.
Concerned parent Dave Ryding said the road’s edges were rough and narrow and there were near misses almost every day as cars and trucks squeezed past children on bicycles.
“I quite often drive past and see kids on the side of the road, dodging potholes and nearly getting hit,” he said.
P and C president Sam Yau has collected nearly 250 signatures in just five days.
She said she knew that many parents did not allow their children to ride to school, but would change their minds if they had access to a path.
“The pick-up and drop-off times are chaos at the moment; the student body has doubled in five years and we have massive parking problems,” she said.
“The petition is not for people who just want a path but for people who will actually use it.”
City of Rockingham councillor Matt Whitfield has fought for this issue in the past and hoped this time there would be a better response since the housing developments were now closer to the school. “This is the oldest school in Baldivis and the closest residences are only 2km away,” he said.
“We understand future housing developments close to the school make it difficult to install a permanent path but that’s not what we are after — something temporary will be fine as long as kids can safely get off the road.”
The City has issued a statement in regards to the footpath request and an investigation is underway with the findings to be presented at the council meeting on October 29.
Other members of the Baldi- vis Primary P and C said they often stopped to pick children up if they had space in their car and had witnessed buses stopping to let children on for free just to keep them safe.
The proposed temporary path would follow Eighty Road and connect the school to estates along Nairn Drive.
Concerned parents and P and C members Ashley Thornhill, Candice Caratozzolo- Schiller, Sam Yau, Emma de Knegt, Renae Fussell and Dave Ryding with Councillor Matt Whitfield.