POLICE have pledged to extend a child safety scheme across South Yorkshire following an overwhelming response to The Star’s It’s Your Child campaign.
Inspector Ian Stubbs has promised the crackdown will be rolled out across the city to tackle irresponsible motorists who put pupils’ safety at risk.
It comes after one brazen mum told officers ‘I don’t do walking’, when asked to move her illegally-parked car and escort her child to school.
The scheme is awarding £2,000 each to 20 schools in priority areas to help improve safety measures and awareness, but there are hundreds more facing daily traffic chaos.
Insp Stubbs said: “The response has been positive and we are thankful for the support.”
Changing the attitudes of parents and irresponsible motorists across Sheffield is top priority for Insp Stubbs in the crackdown, which aims to make roads outside schools safer.
A group of 20 schools in the Gleadless Valley, Woodseats, Lowedges, Nether Edge, Jordanthorpe, Beauchief and Greenhill areas of the city were picked to receive £2,000 each towards measures to improve safety, including more double yellow lines, zig zags and bollards.
A huge number of readers got in touch after The Star highlighted the issue, proving the problem extends far beyond those selected.
The reaction was so strong that police have now pledged to roll out the pilot across the city if it is a success.
Insp Stubbs, in charge of policing for the Sheffield south safer neighbourhood area, said: “The idea for this project came about because we know it is a problem and since it was set up the response has shown that it affects almost every school.
“We started this as a pilot, and if what we do in the schools which have the funding works then we will roll it out to the rest of the city, or the county.
“We’ve got to start somewhere and we’ve got to make sure what we’re doing is effective.”
A survey of around 5,000 parents from the campaign’s chosen school will be carried out by Sheffield Hallam University next week, with a view to bringing in new measures in September.
Insp Stubbs said: “If we did extend it to every school in Sheffield then obviously that is going to be a huge investment, so we need to make sure that what we do has an impact.
“One of the most difficult tasks is to change the behaviour of parents and I think getting the kids involved in education could help.”