Ebbsfleet Academy Urgently Calls for Changes to School Drop-off Area Amid Safety Concerns

Ebbsfleet Academy Urgently Calls for Changes to School Drop-off Area Amid Safety Concerns

Ebbsfleet Academy Calls for Changes to School Drop-off Area

An urgent call for changes to be made to the drop-off area at Ebbsfleet Academy has been made by concerned students. The secondary school, located in Swanscombe, has been plagued by problem parent parking and speeding motorists, causing fear for the safety of students walking to school.

According to the students, it’s only a matter of time before someone gets hurt due to the high amount of traffic and congestion outside the school gates. The issue has become worse since the construction of thousands of new homes in the nearby Castle Hill area, part of Kent’s new garden city.

The academy shares its site with Swanscombe Health Centre, the library, Swan Valley Pharmacy, and access to Manor Community Primary School. However, with the recent increase in students from the neighboring Ebbsfleet development, the school has seen a rise in traffic and a decrease in pedestrian access.

Principal Gurjit Kaur Shergill stated that the situation has become “dangerous” for students leaving the academy. She emphasized the need for urgent action to be taken to ensure the safety of students. The school has taken matters into their own hands, with students using their citizenship lessons to come up with solutions such as surveys, writing to their MP, and proposing a new footpath from the corner of the car park to the new development.

However, the school’s efforts have been hindered by inconsiderate parking by some parents who refuse to use the designated car park and instead double-park, speed, or wait on double yellow lines. The principal, along with her staff, have tried to direct traffic, but it has proven to be ineffective. They have even considered asking for traffic wardens, but have been told it is not an option.

The students have also proposed the idea of adding railings around the narrow pavement outside the school gates and a zebra crossing near the exit. However, they were told the pavement was too narrow for railings to be added. The proposed footpath from the car park to the new development was agreed upon by Ebbsfleet Development Corporation, but no progress has been made since last Easter.

Ms. Shergill emphasized the need for immediate action from the local authority, stating that the current situation is an accident waiting to happen. She also called for the council to consider enforcement for those illegally parking and improvements to the infrastructure to accommodate the growing community.

In response, a spokesman for Ebbsfleet Development Corporation stated that a public consultation is ongoing, and access is being provided through the Green Corridors program. The county council, on the other hand, stated that it was the responsibility of the landowner to consider options for updating roads and maintaining them. They have, however, offered their support to the school in implementing a school travel plan.

The proposed pathway is one of eight in the area, aiming to encourage walking and cycling as an alternative mode of transportation for short journeys. The school is determined to see changes made to ensure the safety of their students and the community.

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