Season for safety

? With school starting this week and next, let?s prepare our kids for a safe transition.

Anew school year begins next week for the school districts in the Free Press distribution area. Safety is always a concern at this time of year, especially for younger students. A few reminders:

? State law prohibits passing a stopped school bus.

? If your child walks to school, choose the safest route and walk it with your child; teach them how to watch for traffic before crossing a street.

? If riding a bike to school, children should wear a helmet and follow the rules of the roads; kids riding on the left side of the street is a frequent and unnerving sight in our small towns.

? If driving them to school, drop off your child in a safe area; make sure they leave the vehicle on the curb side.

Of course, elementary school-age children aren?t the only ones who need to understand and act upon safety common sense. In fact, a case could be made that teens are more vulnerable because they are under less parental oversight.

According to Safe Kids Worldwide, one in five high school students and one in eight middle school students crosses the street while distracted; 39 percent of those distracted students are typing on a cell phone and 39 percent are listening to headphones. The remaining students are talking on the phone (20 percent) or using another electronic device, such as a tablet or game (2 percent).

Make safety Lesson 1 this year. ?DR

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