LAKE CITY, AR (KAIT) - There are always changes associated with the first day of school.
Sometimes it's for the students, sometimes it's for the parents. At Brookland Elementary there will be a major change in the traffic pattern this year.
What the change boils down to is this. The bus lines and car lines have changed places.
Buses in the front, cars to the back.
The changes will be made because of rising attendance and too much traffic on Oak street.
Elementary school principal Dr. Nicole Covey said "It's just the sheer amount of cars that we have to pick up children that was causing the greatest difficulties. And our car line usually takes around 45 minutes so that's a long time for cars to be parked on the street. A lot of people couldn't get in or out of their houses nor could parents who had already dropped off or picked up their children get back to the highway because of the traffic."
So this year buses will drop off and pick up in front and car riders will go to the rear of the school. All cars must turn on Hickory off school street which ties in with school street. The turn to Hickory is right beside the Administration Building.
Covey, "Once they get to Hickory they will see signs telling them either to go to the right if they are picking up a kindergarten through 3rd grade child or go to the Left if picking up a Pre - K child. Once they get on the gravel road it pretty much speaks for itself to go and pick up their children or drop off their children."
The gravel road in the back of the school actually will be 3 lanes with one dedicated only to school buses which will then go to the front of the school circling in off Oak. The parents cars for pick up will be stopped by a set of gates.
In the mornings these gates will be open. In the afternoon they will be closed till about 3 o'clock and then only 4 cars at a time will be allowed through. Since parents may arrive randomly at the school the teachers will use walkie - talkies to prepare the riders for pick up.
Covey, "Our parents put their children's name up on their visors so that we have a person who is calling names out so we can get the children in line ahead of time and it really does speed things up that way."
Like anything new you may need to go over the instructions a few times. There will be help available. Mayor Kenneth Jones says his officers will be strategically placed.
"We've got 7 different points where we're going to have officers located so parents can ask questions. We will be out in full force tomorrow to help anybody that has a problem with the new route."
Since Pre-School doesn't start till next week, Mayor Jones says his officers will stay at route locations for the first full week of school.