The traffic control plan for Hardin County Middle School and Parris South Elementary, put in place two years ago to increase safety, efficiency and take traffic off of Lacefield Drive during student pickup and drop-off times, has been been updated with a few changes. (See map at bottom of this page.)
“It’s been working really, really well – it’s pretty efficient and a whole lot safer,” said HCMS Assistant Principal Jason Carman. “Of course, it’s a little bit slow the first week as people come back and get used to it, and with parents of new students, but when we all get on the same page, we’re done in minutes. If everyone will just be patient and follow the instructions, we’ll all get through it quickly and safely – and that’s the key.”
Carman had a few pointers for parents:
• At the four-lane staging area behind the middle school, the two outer lanes and two inner lanes both converge into one, so watch for other drivers, follow the instructions of the school official directing traffic, and be courteous to others.
• The school official directing traffic to bring cars up to the pick up and drop off point may signal one or several cars at a time to come forward. If several cars are signaled forward to the pick up-drop off point, when you come to a stop, even if behind other cars, please let your students in or out once you’ve come to a full stop. If signaled to come forward as a group, please pick up or drop off your students as a group.
• At the center of the parking lot between the middle school and Parris South, there are two stop signs; one for cars exiting the middle school pickup-drop-off point, and one for cars driving to Parris South to pick up or drop off students. Please – and this is critical, for the safety of students – come to a full stop at each stop sign, and look for oncoming traffic before proceeding. This is a heavy traffic congestion area, and patience is required for the safety of all. Also please understand that buses cannot stop or turn as quickly as a car; they are heavy, and carrying our kids – so give them the right-of-way.
Hardin County Middle School
Some parents may remember that parents picking up or dropping off students did so at the front of the middle school, with buses alternating between the front and the back.
Now, all student drop-offs and pickups by parents in personal vehicles will be at the rear of the building to the far west of the property.
Parents driving west on Lacefield Drive toward the middle school will not turn left (south) in front of the middle school, but proceed past the middle school and then turn left. There will be signage and a traffic control monitor to prevent personal vehicles from turning at the front of the middle school.
After the parent has turned onto the lane behind the middle school, another traffic control monitor will direct them into one of four lined lanes in a large paved parking lot, which will act as a staging or waiting area.
A separate traffic control monitor will direct cars from the staging area to proceed forward to the new student pickup and drop-off point, which is at the rear of the school.
After dropping off or picking up their student, cars will drive forward and around the southern end of the school, and exit on one of the lanes between the middle school and Parris South. Vehicles can exit toward Lacefield Drive or along the front of Parris South to the access road leading to Pickwick Road.
Please note to come to a full stop at any and all stop signs.
The lane in front of the middle school leading to the front doors is reserved for school bus loading and unloading only. During regular school hours, parents or authorized persons can still access the parking lot in front of the school if they need to pick up or drop off a student in the middle of the day, or for other reasons needing a visit to the school.
HCMS is also issuing parents placards printed by the school to place on their dashboards during student pickups, to both speed up the pickup process and ensure that students are being picked up only by those authorized to do so.
Contact the school office to receive a placard.
Parris South Elementary School
At Parris South, the student pick up and drop off points remain the same as in previous years.
The front of the school is available for morning drop off, while the east side entrance lane only is to be used for afternoon pick ups. Special education students can be picked up or dropped off at the west side entrance, closest to the middle school.
Harris asked that parents needing to enter the school note the marked spaces in the parking lot just in front of the school, as only some of those spaces are marked for visitors, and some are marked for handicapped parking.
He also asked that parents needing to enter the school at the beginning or ending of the day during student pick up and drop off times refrain from parking directly in front of the school, but instead take advantage of the lot just above and to the north of the parking spaces directly in front of the school, to facilitate those picking up and dropping off students.
Anyone with questions can call HCMS at 731-925-9037 or Parris South at 731-925-2480.