It’s usually parents who get the blame for dangerous parking outside schools, but this time teachers are also taking the rap.
Staff at Marshland High School are among those causing fears for the safety of pupils and residents – and now a local MP has stepped in to try and find a solution.
Teachers and staff at the West Walton school have sparked concerns as a lack of parking space at the school means many are parking on the busy main road outside the school all day long.
Parents are adding to the problem with nuisance and sometimes illegal parking on School Road at drop-off and collection times, and it is further exacerbated by parents of the nearby West Walton Community Primary School.
The issue has been rumbling on for many years, but now local MP Elizabeth Truss has got involved as it is affecting the whole community.
The MP for South West Norfolk is hosting a public meeting at the school tonight, Friday, January 23, from 7pm to 8pm, to discuss concerns and to try and find a solution.
Local residents have been invited to attend, along with school staff, parents, district and parish council representatives, and the police.
The school’s business manager, Bettina Marshall, said: “Parking along School Road has been an ongoing problem for several years.
“The school has extended its parking capacity over the years, however, there is not the physical space to extend any further. As a result, several staff have to park on School Road, and this, combined with parents parking to drop off their children, creates traffic problems, particularly at the beginning and end of the school day.”
She added: “Mrs Truss has recently become involved as this is not just a school issue, but a wider reaching concern.”
David Cummings, chairman of West Walton Parish Council, said: “You would expect a lot of cars at school pick-up and drop-off times, but cars are parked there all day.
“Teachers are parking there as the school only has a small car park and gets filled up quickly.
“Hopefully a solution to find alternative parking off the main road will be found, and the parish council will do what it can to help. If a convenient, safe and secure alternative is suggested, it will be worth investigating.”