How would you feel about being charged to drop your child off at school?
Yes, you read that right. A school in Staffordshire has introduced the unusual measure of proposing to charge parents an annual fee for using a specially-created car park so that children can be safely dropped off at school.
The Huffington Post reports:
'The fee is being introduced at St Gregory's Catholic Academy, in Longton, Staffordshire, after traffic problems that have "plagued the school for years" led to concerns over pupil's safety. Principal Margaret Yates said: "The safety of the children has to be put first, above everything else. There have been instances of people parking disrespectfully, blocking residents drives, and also some stopping in the middle of the road to let passengers out."'
The fee proposed is £45 per year, charged at £2 per week or £15 per term. That's not exactly going to break the bank, but critics say the school should pay for adequate parking provision, not the parents.
Speaking personally, I think I'd be prepared (a little begrudgingly) to fork out for a parking scheme if that's what it took to make the school safer during drop-off in the mornings and at the end of the day. I agree that in principle the parents probably shouldn't have to foot the bill, but the cash to create a safer parking space has to come from somewhere.
At the end of the day, ensuring the school environment is safe for kids is surely everyone's highest priority - teachers and parents alike - and if funding that to the tune of a couple of quid per week is the way to make that happen, I'm in.
But it does make me wonder what parents might be asked to pay for next.
What do you think of this scheme? How would you feel about being charged to park when dropping off or collecting your kids off from school? Who do you think should pay? We'd love to hear your views over on our Facebook page.