Southampton City Council has two Child Pedestrian Training Schemes which are carried out in pre-school groups and in Reception classes. Children below the age of roughly ten years are generally unable to understand the concepts of speed, distance or even danger. It is never too early, however, to start teaching the basic information about how to use the roads.
Southampton Footsteps Scheme:
Many children today are transported almost entirely by car and therefore have little opportunity to learn pedestrian skills. The Footsteps training package aims to promote the importance of such learning to adults. It is a practical scheme, aimed at the parents of those children who will be moving up to Infant/Primary School in the following September.
Always remember to:
Find a safe place to cross the road
Stop near the kerb
Look all around and listen
When it is safe to cross the road, walk across the road, looking and listening all the time
Most importantly, always talk to your child about what you are doing when using the roads and why.
Southampton Footsteps......Moving On:
The practical roadside training programmes will be reinforced and further developed in the school by the Road Safety Education Officer using some interactive resources.
Children do not have sufficient understanding or experience to use the road independently until AT LEAST the age of 10. However, it is important to begin teaching good practices at an early age.
Road Safety Matters - What parents can do
Assessing your child:
Get your child to take you on a walking route to school, the park or to the shops and assess their capabilities.
Does your child remember to hold your hand?
Does your child know to walk in a straight line to cross the road?
Are they able to pick appropriate places to cross the road?
Are they really looking before they cross?
Make learning about Road Safety fun
Encourage your child and be consistent
Do not let your child out on the roads alone, until you are confident in their ability to cope with different traffic situations. If possible, watch them use quieter roads first.
Your child needs to understand that road safety is important
Try to introduce your child to different road user experiences, for example use of different types of crossing and different forms of transport.