Councillor Phil Bateman said today “Yesterday I had a meeting with the Head Teacher of Corpus Christi School about the parking that takes place around the school entrances.
I have spoken with a wide range of constituent’s householders, parents attending the school. I have engaged the local Authority and finally I have engaged with the Head Teacher.”
He went onto say “Corpus Christi school is like every other school in Wednesfield North. It has a problem at times with the way parents and others insist on driving to the school gates. I have spent both mornings & afternoons observing what takes place at Corpus Christi.
It seems to change by the minute, but I always speak as I find. The arrangements for the school and parents arriving by car to school, is better than most other local schools in the Ward.”
Councillor Bateman added – When I contacted the police with constituents complaints they responded by stating that –
“I can provide an officer on the morning in question in order to conduct the usual school patrols that we carry out. As a side, I am sure the officer would also appropriately deal with any obstructions of the highway. I hope this provides you with some reassurance. On another note, I refer to your previous email regarding parking outside schools in particular Corpus Christi. As you can appreciate parking issues outside schools is a constant battle right across Wednesfield North and South. During my tenure, the Neighbourhood team have carried out several initiatives to engage parents at a number of schools with a view to education. We find that the situation improves, but with each new school year the problem arises.
This is the first time that I have received a complaint regarding Corpus Christi. You are correct in your previous comments, that the school has some responsibility, as does the local authority that as you will be aware have an enforcement vehicle – unfortunately only one for the City! I will include Corpus Christi on the list for the schools that we routinely patrol, to provide support and reassurance to everyone involved. Perhaps if you highlight the school to the local council they will also include the school in their rota?!”
Councillor Bateman then said “I also asked the Local Authority to investigate and they informed me that – “I’ve carried out two site visits to Corpus Christi Catholic Primary School in response to the e-mail that we received from Cllr Phil Bateman. Here are my observations: On both visits I only saw one car pulled up on the school keep clear markings on Ashmore Avenue, the markings are extremely worn – A request has been made to refresh them as a matter of urgency
There were a couple of cars parked wholly on the pavement on the corners of Sandy Crescent and opposite the junction of Sandy Crescent and Ashmore Avenue, in contravention of the double yellow lines that can be found at this location. On Griffiths Drive a number of parents do park in the laybys that can be found outside of the houses. On both visits though I didn’t observe any driveways being blocked and parents were observant of the H markings that are already in place.
I did have a look at what was going on in the social club car park and didn’t see anything that concerned me from a safety point of view. There is a pedestrian footpath running down the one side of the car park which is well used by parents and children as they exit this area. I did see one car pull half on half off this pavement, but when the driver pulled off he was mindful about the pedestrians present here. Yes there were vehicle movements at the same time as pedestrian movements but everyone was careful of each other. The car park doesn’t allow for a high level of speed to be reached and there is a speed cushion on entry and exit of the car park. I would feel that the car park is a real asset to the school in terms of managing those parents that choose to drive to pick up and drop off their children by car. If the car park wasn’t there then all of the cars would be parked on the roads surrounding the schools. As the car park is well used not many parents use the roads near to the school as their pick up and drop off point.
All in all this was one of the better schools that I have viewed recently with regards to road safety” Councillor Bateman stated “ So again yesterday I watched parents arriving in the morning. There didn’t appear to be any excessive waiting in Ashmore Avenue, there was some cars quickly arriving onto the car park, and there were cars that parked against the fence, where there should be no car parking.” He reports that “I then met with the School Principal and we discussed the issues and the problems as they had been reported to me.
She made the point that they have a member of staff on duty at the entrance to the school.
That they regularly write to parents reminding them about congestion and safe driving and parking on the car park.
Mrs Holden Gough also agreed to placing warning signs on the fence which divides the school from the Social Club. I also pointed out that some of the residents complaints were that the school didn’t always inform them when there was large extra curricular activity taking place at the school. When these events take place, sometimes it’s very hard to access local property.
I asked the Head to make the extra effort to inform local residents when these performances happen. I shall also be asking the Police and the Local Authority to continue to make the patrols and visits they currently do. I would also request parents to be mindful of speed when using the car park, and be aware and courteous when parking on street, close to homes in the vicinity of the school, and to do their best not to block homes access and egress.