Highlight road safety outside our school.
Our Social Issue
We linked with our Green Schools Committee and decided to focus on Road Safety with a particular focus on the road outside our school. A speed survey conducted by our Green Schools and YSI students saw vehicles travel at an average speed of 72km in a 50km zone. A survey of the area showed little acknowledgement of the fact that there are four educational institutions on that particular stretch of road. Our focus was to make the area safer for our school students and other pedestrians. Our initial plan looked at getting signage to highlight the educational institutions, a pedestrian crossing for use by our school community or speed bumps to slow down vehicles using the area.
Who We Worked With
Mr. McGill our Principal was very supportive of our project. He raised it at a Board of Management meeting and got the support of the board. Our local Councillor Mr. Terry O'Brien, also Chairperson of our Board of Management met with us to hear our concerns and took them to Kerry County Council. We worked closely with the Green Schools Committee in the school and also Ms. Angela Wall from An Taisce. Cllr Terry O'Brien came to the school to meet with us and address our concerns. He gave us feedback from a meeting he had with the roads engineer Mr. Colm Nagle. Our school community also worked with us by completing the surveys we sent out.
How We Communicated
Initially, our group spoke with Mr. McGill, our Principal, to get his support on his project. Once he approved of our plans we sent out an invite to Cllr. Terry O'Brien and local Kerry County Council roads engineer Mr. Colm Nagle to come and meet with us. We also linked with Ms. Angela Wall from An Taisce who helped us conduct a speed survey on the road. We wrote to the Principal and Managers of Kerry College of Further Education, National Learning Network and Munster Technological University South Campus asking them to support our campaign to make the road a safer place for pedestrians. Finally we surveyed the students to find out how many come to school by car, walk, cycle etc and their concerns re safety when crossing the road. We used this report to conduct a car idling survey at hometime on a particular day.
Our Innovative Action and Impact
Our initial plan was to get signage in the area highlighting all the educational institutions (Coláiste Gleann Lí, Kerry College of Further Education, National Learning Network and MTU south campus). We wanted digital speed signs in the area and we also looked at getting a pedestrian crossing outside our school. When we contacted Cllr. Terry O'Brien and Mr. Colm Nagle they addressed our concerns but also informed us that Kerry County Council looked at our requests and decided to do an in-depth survey/study of the area to make a long lasting improvement in the area instead of putting in any temporary measures. They advised us as to why a pedestrian crossing and speed bumps wouldn't work in the area due to it being near the entrance to an industrial estate. After hearing our concerns and looking at the results of our survey they informed us that they would conduct a complete survey of the area.