Havering primary school pupils protest parents' illegal parking
PUBLISHED: 13:10 30 November 2017 | UPDATED: 08:59 02 December 2017
A peaceful protest against reckless school run parents is being staged by Havering primary schools pupils this week.
Armed with self-made posters and creative chants, 20 Year 5 Oasis Academy Pinewood pupils are demanding that parents stop parking on the zigzag lines outside their school, located on Thistledene Avenue, Collier Row.
The youngsters, accompanied by their teacher, supportive parents and traffic enforcement officers, are gathering outside the school from 2.50pm to 3.10pm everyday until Friday, December 1.
Inspiration for the demonstration came after a parent, nearly struck by the vehicle of another parent, complained to teacher Sally Pardoe, 53, a fortnight ago.
She said: “We had tried everything.
“We have sent letters and put notices in our Parent Mail newsletter.
“On several occasions the head teacher has been outside the school and spoken to parents.”
And so Sally decided to step it up a gear with direct action.
Commenting on the effectiveness of the protest, she said: “It’s going really well.
“Whilst we have had a visible presence there has been no parking outside the school.
“Quite a few parents have joined in and said ‘well done, it is about time’.”
All pupils have been briefed not to speak with the drivers and police officers are attending to offer support should any problems arise.
The protests are currently limited to Sally’s class - about half of the school’s Year 5 pupils.
Staging daily protests is taking time away from their lessons, Sally admitted
She added: “We can’t afford to take away from teaching on a regular basis.”
At the same time, she feels that the protests have taught her class important lessons.
“They have been holding up posters which they created themselves.
“They also made up a chant saying ‘Keep us Safe!’”
She added: “They have learnt about democracy and so it is all worthwhile.”
In order to continue the momentum, she hopes that other classes will adopt similar tactics to support the cause as the will spread the message to more parents.
Going forward, Sally is running a competition among her class to design a leaflet discouraging illegal parking that can be placed on windshields.