Students of Commodore Sloat Elementary School in San Francisco performed the duty of directing traffic along Darien Way under the supervision of police officer — and it seems to have improved parents' behavior.
More than 20 students participated and were given training to direct the traffic. A similar program will be implemented at Alice Fong Yu Alternative School and Lakeshore Elementary School.
According Greg John, principal at Commodore Sloat, the student crossing guard program was very successful. They noticed that parents behave better with children as crossing guards, writes Tim Ryan in CBS SF.
San Francisco Unified School District Superintendent Richard Carranza said "students crossing guards get a bit of a power rush when they gear up. I got to put my belt on for the first time, and I got my sign. And I could actually stop traffic."
Supervisor Norman Yee secured funding for the pilot program at three schools in his district, according to SFGate News. Five young Commodore Sloat Elementary School students held stop signs and directed traffic along Darien Way under the supervision of a police officer. Under the new program, students are being trained to help their classmates safely cross streets before and after school, with adult supervision, writes Dan McMenamin of Bay City News.
Emma Olenberger, traffic safety specialist at AAA, said that AAA is providing the neon green hats, sashes and badges that will be worn by the guards. The company also supplied training videos.
Previously, AAA partnered with the city on a similar program that was ended in 2010. Supervisor Norman Yee, who secured funding to pay for the adult supervisors, re-launched the program again.
According to Olenberger, AAA is engaged in assisting with crossing guard programs involving more than 635,000 students at about 35,000 schools nationwide.
San Francisco Unified School District Superintendent Richard Carranza speaks from experience as a former crossing guard. He said that students crossing guards get a bit of a power rush when they gear up, "I got to put my belt on for the first time, and I got my sign," he said, recalling his days as a crossing guard. "And I could actually stop traffic."
John said that many drivers were not stopping safely near the school and it is very dangerous for kids arriving and leaving from school.
"We want to make sure that every part of that journey is as safe as possible. Parents are distracted as they have kids, and it's a busy life," John said. "And this intersection has been a bit challenging at times.
Yee is hopeful that success at these initial schools will spur others to become involved in the youth program. It was not clear when other schools will start the program.