As a school crossing guard, I have the wonderful privilege of meeting kind-hearted people, brightening people's days up, making sure kids get to school safely, and also the other things: like almost getting ran over at least twice a week, watching speeders zoom past me, watching people drive with their knees or elbows while packing their kid's lunches, texting, transferring coffee from one mug to another mug while quizzing their kids on their homework at the same time, and people thinking that by hitting one of our signs, they can gain 10 points.

What's amazing is the drivers that are speeding past us are the ones that just dropped their own kids off at school. You would think it would be drivers that don't have kids, but it is the complete opposite. Other times we put up our signs, and the kids will start walking across, when one or two drivers decide to keep going regardless of the fact that our sign is up, and we know that they saw our signs because they wave at us as they drive by.

Anyone who is a driver has the responsibility to follow driving rules and driving laws. Although they may be inconvenient at times, they are all made for a reason. In regards to school zones, there is a reason why you have to drive 15 mph while approaching a crosswalk. There is a reason why you must stop when a crossing guard puts up their sign. You may not see a child in the crosswalk but that does not mean that there is not a child in it. When a crossing guard puts up the stop sign there is a reason for it. Please stop. We only stop you guys for about 30 seconds to a minute and then we let traffic flow again. We are not doing it to inconvenience you on your way to work or wherever you are going, we stop you because it is our job to get the kids across the street safely.

Please pay more attention and go back to the basics, especially around school zones: both hands on the wheel, no phone in sight, paying attention to your surroundings, paying attention to crossing guard signs and cones, paying attention to the children, driving no faster than 15 mph, not making illegal U-turns into the crosswalk, and just focusing on driving only. By doing so we can all make sure that our kid's safety is top priority as well it should be top priority already.

Michelle Arana

Cerritos Crossing Guard

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