cycle to school contract

This sub-forum all discussions about this "lively" subject. All topics that are substantially about helmets will be moved here, if not placed here correctly in the first place.
Steady rider
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Steady rider » 13 Oct 2013, 10:03am

• I understand that if the contract is broken that permission to cycle to school may be withdrawn.


If the contract is not signed then the agreement is not enforceable. People should return the contract with a note saying they do not agree with it. Any interference with the child cycling to school or conditions attached affects the child's human rights.

Copies of documentation should be sent to the CTC.
Last edited by Steady rider on 14 Oct 2013, 6:37pm, edited 1 time in total.

thirdcrank
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby thirdcrank » 13 Oct 2013, 11:26am

I'll suggest that this sort of thing is worthless in any sort of legal contractual context. The fact that it comes from a school doesn't make the writer any sort of lawyer. (Last winter my grandchildren's school had signs up saying that some access paths within the school grounds were icy and people used them at their own risk. Nonsense. I fancy that the only legal significance is that it shows knowledge of the danger. ie it's an unfair disclaimer.)

The legal niceties don't matter because for most people, and as has already been suggested, enforcement comes through a form of blackmail: many (most?) parents don't want to be in conflict with a school, nor do they want to prepare bullets for their children to fire.

Presumably, backside covering is at the er, bottom of this. I can understand that a head teacher would not want to be in a position where a child was injured on the way home from school and a parent complained that they didn't know that the child was being allowed to leave school in some way unprepared for the journey. The way round that must surely be written parental consent required for any pupil cycling to and from school under each parent's own rules. (Before anybody says the obvious, it's something the LEA's legal department would have to word.) Beyond that, I wonder if there's a concern that any parent allowing their child to cycle without a helmet is ipso facto guilty of a form of child neglect which a school could not tolerate. :?

Without involving anybody in the underlying helmet debate, there must be a head teacher or two who is/are forum member(s.) Perhaps somebody could explain what it is that these staff room lawyers are concerned about?

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Mick F
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Mick F » 13 Oct 2013, 12:11pm

What an absolute load of TOSH.

Don't sign it, send it back and tell them to stuff it where the sun doesn't shine.
Mick F. Cornwall

Geriatrix
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Geriatrix » 13 Oct 2013, 12:33pm

The school should be asked for the evidence to justify their position. I think that schools are sucked in by FUD. Cycling for whatever reason attracts a disproportionate amount of debate, and the polarised nature of that debate has resulted in huge volumes of disinformation on safety, both for the cyclist and pedestrian.

One of the features of the anti-cycling contingent is that their argument is dominated by anecdotal evidence. Everyone seems to have nearly been killed by a cyclist, or knows someone that has. If these were all true then bicycles would be the most dangerous vehicles on the planet and the existing annual road safety stats a lie. Strong moral opinions prevail (a polite phrase for prejudice), and if the evidence to support the prejudice doesn't exist then anecdotal evidence is a convenient way of creating it.

On the safety of the cyclist? Well that's just a convenient way limiting cycling activities whilst appearing to act for the cyclist's well being.

Having more children on the road places greater responsibility on drivers to change their driving habits, and for the traffic authorities to ensure that drivers shoulder those responsibilities. Both drivers and the authorities have grown accustomed to not having that responsibility. FUD is a much easier way to stop children from cycling.
For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled - Richard Feynman

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hubgearfreak
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby hubgearfreak » 16 Oct 2013, 7:31pm

i've attempted a well thought out letter of response, but everytime i try, start ranting. :evil:

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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Vorpal » 16 Oct 2013, 8:05pm

thirdcrank wrote:Presumably, backside covering is at the er, bottom of this. I can understand that a head teacher would not want to be in a position where a child was injured on the way home from school and a parent complained that they didn't know that the child was being allowed to leave school in some way unprepared for the journey. The way round that must surely be written parental consent required for any pupil cycling to and from school under each parent's own rules. (Before anybody says the obvious, it's something the LEA's legal department would have to word.) Beyond that, I wonder if there's a concern that any parent allowing their child to cycle without a helmet is ipso facto guilty of a form of child neglect which a school could not tolerate. :?

Without involving anybody in the underlying helmet debate, there must be a head teacher or two who is/are forum member(s.) Perhaps somebody could explain what it is that these staff room lawyers are concerned about?


IMO, it is 99% ignorance. Most cyclists have no clue about the great helmet debate. How can we expect the average person, or even a head teacher to think that they are anything but good? Especially when the Highway Code suggests wearing them, and the local authority hand out 'road safety' literature that implies they are a requirement? I have discussed this with a few teachers and one or two head teachers, and all but one of them understood, at leaast that it should be personal choice, when presented with evidence that helmets may not be the life-saving device that they had previously believed them to be.
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gaz
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby gaz » 16 Oct 2013, 8:10pm

Put the ball back in their court.

Write in simply saying that you don't understand why they are insisting upon these pre-conditions rather than a simple consent that you are responsible for your child's journey to and from school. Afterall they rely upon motoring parents making sensible, informed and legal choices with regard to such basics as booster seats rather than insisting on a "driven to school" contract.

Once you know how they are seeking to justify their conditions you can begin to deconstruct their arguments. A meeting with the governors may be a good opportunity to put forward your reasoned and evidence supported point of view in contrast with their mindless FUD.
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Edwards
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Edwards » 16 Oct 2013, 8:21pm

Not a staff room lawyer but somebody that gave up their summer holidays to construct a secure cycle parking area. Then had to deals with some of the problems, here are a few just to give you an idea.

Complaint from parent that I would not let a child ride home on his bike with no brakes.

Complaint from same parent that same child had fallen off to bike and damaged his school uniform because he had taken the brake off.

Complaint from parent that I kept the bike cage locked during school hours.

Numerous phone calls from parents threating to sue because their child had done something on their bike either going to school or home.

Numerous complaints from parents that the tyres were flat on the children's bikes before school or when they got home.

Pupils wanting to ride the bike on the play ground and down pedestrian paths with other pupils about.

It was such a pain that I regret building the thing in the first place.
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Vorpal
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Vorpal » 16 Oct 2013, 8:51pm

Edwards wrote:...Complaint from parent that I would not let a child ride home on his bike with no brakes....Complaint from same parent ....
Complaint from parent that I kept the bike cage locked during school hours....

The parents who complain about things like that will always find something to complain about.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

Edwards
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Edwards » 16 Oct 2013, 9:19pm

Vorpal wrote:The parents who complain about things like that will always find something to complain about.


They are just a few that stick out. Plus I forget the amount of times I had to stand outside in the rain waiting for various miscreants coming to school or going home. Often ending up getting sworn at, so any school that now encourages cycling must have found an other idiot like me to take this on.

The only mention of helmets was that the parents should consider the use for their child and the school would not store them during the day.
I got fed up of complaints from parents other staff and the local MP wanting the children to be forced to wear them by the school. The reply was it is up to the parents to decide the school was not going to get involved in something that we could not enforce.
Keith Edwards
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Tonyf33
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Tonyf33 » 17 Oct 2013, 12:43am

That's a pretty sad state of affairs Edwards considering your effort, there's no accounting for uneducated and downright rude adults never mind the kids themselves.

Can't the CTC weigh in to parliament and get them to look at this as a matter of urgency, it's clearly having a detrimental effect on the numbers of kids who probably want, or are able to be encouraged to cycle to school yet the idiots in charge (or have some say) seem on the face of it to be putting as many obstacles in the way as possible thus encouraging more car use :twisted:

broadway
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby broadway » 17 Oct 2013, 8:44am

gaz wrote:Put the ball back in their court.

Write in simply saying that you don't understand why they are insisting upon these pre-conditions rather than a simple consent that you are responsible for your child's journey to and from school. Afterall they rely upon motoring parents making sensible, informed and legal choices with regard to such basics as booster seats rather than insisting on a "driven to school" contract.

Once you know how they are seeking to justify their conditions you can begin to deconstruct their arguments. A meeting with the governors may be a good opportunity to put forward your reasoned and evidence supported point of view in contrast with their mindless FUD.



and is there a walking to school contract?

thirdcrank
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby thirdcrank » 17 Oct 2013, 10:25am

broadway wrote: ... and is there a walking to school contract?


Who knows? but the numbers walking to school continue to contract. ditto cycling. That's why we will soon need multi-storey pavements outside schools to accommodate all the cars.

Edwards
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Edwards » 17 Oct 2013, 11:44am

Schools get phone calls about the behaviour of pupils walking and cycling to schools. I used to get some put through to me but it did not take that long before the secretaries put them straight through to the head. It just saved the complaint about me as well as the pupil.

Why do the public think that members of staff at a school are responsible for the behaviour of the pupils before and after the school day is not clear to me.

The point of these types of contract is to attract the type of parent and pupil you want to use bikes to get to school. It is after all to nobodies advantage if a pupil rides out into the road into the path of a car because they have no brakes.
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Tonyf33
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Re: cycle to school contract

Postby Tonyf33 » 17 Oct 2013, 2:16pm

mmm, so you are effectively trying to exclude those kids from cycling to school on the basis that their parents can't be bothered with a 'cycling contract', not sure I agree with that to be honest.
I'd rather be more concerned with restrictions of motor vehicles within a 1/2 mile proximity of a school during start/lunch/end times, this absolutely then removes with a sweep themajority of safety issues associated with the school run.