School Squad campaign aims to protect pupils by keeping vehicles away from school gates

Comely Park Primary schoolchildren spread vital road safety messages to parents with help from police and the School Squad cut-outs
Comely Park Primary schoolchildren spread vital road safety messages to parents with help from police and the School Squad cut-outs

Police have launched a road safety campaign to protect children by urging drivers not to park outside school gates.

The School Squad initiative was rolled out across the Falkirk district for the first time last week in a bid to encourage parents and carers to find drop-off and pick-up points away from zig-zag and double yellow lines.

The scheme provides schools with miniature metal community officer cut-outs which carry messages of important road safety advice.

Its creation was a direct response to concerns raised by teaching staff and those who live near the region’s schools over the potential for accidents caused by cars using such areas as pick-up and drop-off zones.

Although still in its infancy, police are pleased with the impact the campaign is having.

Easter Carmuirs, Carmuirs and Comely Park primaries are among the schools to have already been paid a visit by police and the School Squad. Police plan to tour round each of the district’s primaries to put School Squad cut-outs in place.

Sergeant Andy Angus, of Falkirk Police Station, said: “The School Squad officers will be deployed to schools around the Falkirk area to educate pupils on the importance of road safety and to spread the message to parents.

“The idea was developed in recognition of the issues and concerns schools and residents who live in close proximity to the area’s schools have highlighted to us. We hope the campaign will stop people from putting children’s lives in danger.”

Grangemouth councillor David Balfour, a long-term campaigner on the issue, said: “Anything that keeps children safe can only be welcomed but we still need to do more.

“The School Squad helps because it raises awareness and makes people think.”