A new survey of parents of children aged 18 and under suggests people are three times as likely to find the school run stressful as meeting their line manager at work (22% vs 7%) and almost twice as likely as commuting to work (12%).
Polling from by the Clean Cities Campaign found 22% of those questioned said the school run is stressful, compared to seven per cent of line manager meetings, while 12% said commuting to work stresses them.
This survey was carried out to coincide with the launch in London of a Europe-wide campaign to urge city leaders to create thousands of new ‘school streets’ across the continent, with a focus on newly elected councillors.
The pollsters say parents would much rather walk or cycle with their children to school, with nearly six in ten (59%) saying that walking or cycling is the best way to spend quality time with their children, while only one in ten (11%) say driving is a way to bond and engage with their children. Increased safety (39%) and cleaner air (10%) are listed as the biggest potential benefits of school streets.
Despite this, official data shows that up to two-fifths (43%) of rush-hour car trips in some parts of London are linked to school drop-off. Overall across London over a quarter (27%) of peak car driver trips in the morning are for school drop-off. Tower Hamlets has the highest level of any London borough at 43%, according to official data from Transport for London.
Will Norman, London’s Walking and Cycling Commissioner said, “Currently the school run accounts for a quarter of morning traffic in London, and this is why School Streets – which encourage walking, cycling and scooting – play such a vital role in driving down congestion, air pollution and road danger.
“In the capital we have seen the massive difference School Streets have made to our communities alongside strong support from Londoners, with more than half of London’s 5-11 year olds now walking to school. Research shows that this reduces nitrogen dioxide by up to 23 per cent during the morning school drop-off. There are now more than 500 School Streets across the capital and we know that children, parents and councils are keen to introduce even more.”
(Picture – Yay Images)