Parking problems at schools

In the United Kingdom parking at schools is a big problem. It is in fact greater than at universities although administrations at institutions of tertiary education take their parking problems seriously.

Essentially, only two sets of people are entitled to park in school parking spaces:

    • Approved staff members

Contractors by pre-arrangement with the school

In practice, in addition to the above two there are two further categories of school parkers:

  • Parents dropping off their children/teenagers
  • Complete outsiders hoping to save on on-street and car park charges

On account of many parents and guardians thronging at and near school gates at the start and close of the school day a considerable headache arises for school administrators.

This problem, and it really is a problem, is exacerbated by the fact the schools are usually sited by town planners in built-up areas where on-street and commercial parking charges by business car parks are high and, in the case of the centres of cities, very high.

West Mercia Police has published a guideline including:

‘Telford & Wrekin’s Community Support Officer [CSO] Target Team, which is based at Malinsgate Police Station, recently responded to concerns raised by teachers at John Fletcher School in Madeley about illegal and dangerous parking on the zig-zag lines outside the school gates.

‘The work being done by the Target Team – which supports the Telford & Wrekin Police Division’s Operation SOS (Safer Outside Schools) campaign – started on Monday 16 November and has seen CSOs patrolling outside the school twice daily and speaking to some of the motorists who appear to be responsible for the parking problem.

‘In the first instance the motorists have been given advice and verbal warnings about their parking and also had their vehicle registration numbers noted and entered into a database. As long as the vehicles are not recorded parking illegally again then no formal action will take place.’

PC Brenda Bellamy, who recently took up the role in charge of the CSO Target Team over there said: ‘Operation SOS is ongoing outside schools right across the Borough and has been received very positively by teachers, parents and pupils alike. We were notified about this particular issue in Madeley by the school and the Local Policing Team and CSOs have been working hard to address the concerns raised.’

The fact is that, especially in congested vehicular conditions on the streets, the demand/supply intersection point motivates motorists, some of whom have slim and/or no connections to a school to avail themselves of tempting car parking facilities on school grounds.

A lawful deterrent that works is mandatory for any school in this situation and our research indicates that a majority of primary, middle, secondary and private schools really are in this situation, and have to take sensible action.

We at Flashpark think we have the best answer to this particular challenge. It has the virtues of:

  • Legality
  • Effectiveness (proved by experience)
  • Non-physicality
  • Non-confrontational

And our satisfied customers agree wholeheartedly.

All that is required is registering with Flashpark, putting up warning notices and emailing Flashpark photographs of offending vehicles. Flashpark does everything for you after that.

In practice, the very sight of the Flashpark warning notices work wonders, as the customers agree.